Wednesday, August 24, 2011

North Korean Leader Visits Bureyskaya Power Station in Russia

Kim Jong-il Visits Bureyskaya Power Station in Russia's Amur Region

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, on the second leg of his first trip to Russia in nearly 10 years, visited the Bureyskaya Hydroelectric Power Station in the country's Amur region on Sunday, according to South Korean diplomatic sources.

The Kremlin’s regional envoy Viktor Ishayev and a throng of local officials welcomed Kim with a local traditional ceremony, and then gave him a tour of the largest hydro power station in the Far East region.

Photos of Kim, posted by the local Internet portal site "Amur," show the North Korean head was accompanied by his fourth wife Kim Ok, who experts say for the purpose of attending to his health needs.

Russia in recent years has tried to get the two Koreas to sign on a gas and power line construnction deal, for which Bureyskaya would serve as the power supplying station.

Analysts say that Kim's visit to the power station may have to do with advancing the energy project.

After touring the power plant, Kim reportedly left for the Siberian city of Ulan Ude about 3-thousand kilometers west from the Amur region, where he is scheduled to hold a bilateral summit with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, possibly on Tuesday.

Russia has also shown keen interest in connecting the Trans-Siberian Railway, or TSR, and the Trans-Korean Railway, or TKR, lines with North and South Korean railroad networks.

And experts forecast that Kim Jong-il is likely to discuss the railway projects with President Medvedev at the summit.

Kim Yeon-ji, Arirang News.

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