Russian foreign minister to head to North Korea

File image of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

BEIJING (AP) _ Russia says Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will travel to North Korea for talks on Thursday.

The foreign ministry said in a statement Wednesday that Lavrov would hold talks with North Korea’s foreign policy chief to discuss bilateral issues as well as the overall situation on the Korean Peninsula.

Lavrov’s upcoming visit comes ahead of a planned summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un next month.

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A topNorth Korean official has arrived at Beijing’s airport on his way to a meeting in New York in hopes of trying to salvage a summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump.

Kim Yong Chol was seen at Beijing’s airport just after noon on Wednesday as he was heading to his connecting flight.

Trump and Kim Jong Un were set to meet June 12 in Singapore, but Trump last week announced he was pulling out. Since then, Trump has suggested the meeting could be back on.

Kim Yong Chol is to meet with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

He would be the highest-level North Korean official to travel to the U.S. since 2000.