North Korea

North Korea, Cuba agree to deepen ties amid US sanctions

  • Kim Jong-un and Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez said to have had an ‘in-depth exchange on crucial issues of common concern’
PUBLISHED : Monday, 05 November, 2018, 11:06am
UPDATED : Monday, 05 November, 2018, 9:50pm

North Korea and Cuba, two countries subject to US economic sanctions, have agreed to deepen their “strategic” relations, Pyongyang’s state-run media said on Monday.

During talks in Pyongyang on Sunday, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez had an “in-depth exchange of views on crucial issues of common concern” to the two nations, the Korean Central News Agency reported.

The report did not elaborate on international matters the two leaders discussed, but they are believed to have included working closely together to get the United States to ease sanctions.

Washington has imposed economic sanctions aimed at preventing Pyongyang from developing nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles and also banned its citizens from engaging in economic activity that benefits the Cuban military.

 North Korea has urged the US to ease economic sanctions now that Pyongyang has promised Washington that it will achieve “complete” denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula. The two counties have no diplomatic ties.

Cuba, meanwhile, restored diplomatic relations with the US in 2015 when Barack Obama was US president, but ties between the two neighbours have deteriorated recently, partly as Donald Trump tries to roll back his predecessor’s policy.

After making a trip to North Korea, Diaz-Canel is scheduled to visit Shanghai to attend the first China International Import Expo, slated to be held for six days through Saturday.