April 3, 2018 - 14:46 AMT
North Korea foreign minister to visit Azerbaijan

North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho left Pyongyang for Beijing on Tuesday, April 3 morning and will visit Azerbaijan and Russia shortly thereafter, regional media reported Tuesday, Sputnik reports.

After his visit to China, the minister will take part in a ministerial meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) scheduled for Thursday and Friday in Baku, and then he will visit Russia, the Yonhap news agency reported, citing diplomatic sources.

Pyongyang has not yet revealed any announcement of the foreign minister's tour.

The Russian Foreign Ministry earlier said that Moscow was working on the visit of the North Korean foreign minister to Russia in the near future.

Experts link Ri Yong-ho's visit to Russia, as well as the trip of the country's head Kim Jong-un to China last week, to North Korea's desire to ensure support of other countries before Kim's meetings with the presidents of South Korea and the United States, in order to guarantee the preservation of the political system and reduce military threats at the denuclearization negotiations.