HAVANA – Cuba’s leader of the Communist Party, Raul Castro, and President Miguel Diaz-Canel met on Thursday with the Vice Chairman of the Workers’ Party of North Korea, Ri Su-yong, to discuss bilateral relations.
Castro and Kim Jong-un’s envoy remarked on “the excellent state” of the relations that unite the peoples, parties and governments of Cuba and Korea, and expressed “the will to continue deepening them” Cuba’s official media reported.
During the discussions, Diaz-Canel and Ri also highlighted the traditional ties of friendship that unite their countries.
Diaz-Canel thanked the envoy for the hospitality he received during his visit to North Korea in November 2018 and remembered “with satisfaction” his exchange with the Supreme leader, Kim Jong-un.
Ri – considered a close aide to Kim – was last in Cuba in July 2018, when he personally handed Diaz-Canel a message from the North Korean leader. He also recently delivered a gift from the Cuban president to Kim in Pyongyang.
Diaz-Canel gifted an unpublished collection of Cuban folk songs performed by renowned artists such as singer-songwriters Carlos Puebla and Silvio Rodriguez.
Ri arrived in Cuba on May 20 for a work visit, and his agenda features meetings with senior officials from Havana that included official talks with Cuban Vice President and Politburo member of the Cuban Communist Party, Roberto Morales.
He also met with the President of the National Assembly of People’s Power, Esteban Lazo, and with the Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marcelino Medina.
Cuba and North Korea established diplomatic relations on Aug. 29, 1960, one year after the revolution led by Fidel Castro.
Relations between the two communist nations have been close with frequent visits from leaders on both sides.