The Daily Telegraph

Queen sends ‘good wishes’ to North Korea

- By Hannah Furness and Nicola Smith

THE QUEEN has sent a message to Kim Jong-un, conveying her good wishes to the people of North Korea on their national day.

The country’s state media published the greeting, in an apparent first for the nation.

The Queen is understood to have sent similar messages on North Korea’s national day in the past, but it is unclear why the country decided to publish this one, which was released shortly before missile tests were reportedly launched by North Korea.

The Kim dynasty has long placed great emphasis on gifts and messages from internatio­nal dignitarie­s as a sign of its legitimacy, despite the regime’s status as a pariah nuclear-armed state.

However, it is rare for the reclusive and paranoid Kim Jong-un to meet with other foreign leaders or to leave the country.

His reclusive state has become further isolated after sealing its borders to keep out the coronaviru­s.

It was reported in North Korea, which celebrates its national day with a military parade, as being received on Sept 7, by “Kim Jong-un, president of the State Affairs of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea”.

According to local media, it said: “As the people of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea celebrate their National Day, I send my good wishes for the future.”

The message was not shared with the British press, nor on the palace’s social media accounts.

Buckingham Palace confirmed Her Majesty had sent a message via the Foreign, Commonweal­th and Developmen­t Office. The Queen

‘As the people of the DPRK celebrate… I send my good wishes for the future’

acts on the advice of the FCDO when it comes to dealing with other heads of state.

The royal recognitio­n will be seen as extraordin­ary, particular­ly as it came shortly before reports of a weekend test launch of long-range cruise missiles that experts believe could have a nuclear capability.

An FCDO spokesman said: “As in previous years, HM The Queen has sent a message to the people of the DPRK on the occasion of their National Day.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United Kingdom