In the tumultuous landscape of post-invasion Ukraine, a nation straddles two disparate worlds ~ the grim trenches of a relentless war and the increasingly contentious political battleground in Kyiv.
North Korea leader Kim Jong-un said he was “deeply impressed” with the advanced state of Russian aerospace and aviation technology as he visited an aircraft plant during his ongoing visit to Russia this week, Pyongyang’s state media said on Saturday.
Following his summit meeting with President Vladimir Putin, Kim visited the Yuri Gagarin Aviation Plant that produces advanced fighter jets including the Sukhoi Su-35 in the far eastern region of Komsomolsk-on-Amur on Friday, reports Yonhap News Agency.
“Saying that he was deeply impressed by the rich independent potential and modernity of the Russian aircraft manufacturing industry and its ceaseless enterprising efforts toward new goals, he sincerely hoped that the plant would make sustained development by achieving higher production growth in the future,” the North’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said.
Kim expressed “sincere regard” for Russia’s aviation technology undergoing rapid development and “outpacing the outside potential threats”, it added.
He also “highly appreciated the officials, scientists, technicians and workers of the plant for making a great contribution to the development of the country’s air industry by achieving excellent successes in production with highly advanced technology and strong mental power”.
Founded in 1934, the aviation plant made a “great contribution to defeating fascism” during the Soviet Union’s Great Patriotic War by producing various kinds of aircraft, including long-range bombers.
Today it is the largest Su-type fighter jet manufacturer in Russia, according to KCNA.
KCNA said Kim departed for his next destination Friday afternoon.
He is expected to travel to Vladivostok and meet Russia’s Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu and have a tour of the Navy’s Pacific fleet.