North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un congratulated Russian President-elect Vladimir Putin Thursday on his landslide victory in the March 4 presidential elections and said that he wished Putin “building a powerful Russia,” North Korean state-run Rodong Sinmun daily reported on Thursday.
“I wish you achievement in your responsible work for building a powerful Russia, expressing belief that the traditional bilateral relations of friendship and cooperation would grow stronger,” Kim said in his letter.
Kim Jong-Un has run the isolated, nuclear-armed state since the death of his father Kim John-Il in December, 2011.
Shortly after Putin’s victory which critics say is illegitimate because of the mass vote frauds, the United States sent to Russia muted congratulations, which did not even mention Putin’s name, but only the title.
“The United States congratulates the Russian people on the completion of the presidential elections and looks forward to working with the president-elect after the results are certified and he is sworn in,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said on Monday.
White House spokesman Jay Carney however said earlier on Friday that no conclusions should be drawn from the fact that U.S. President Barack Obama has not yet personally congratulated Putin.
Putin was Russia’s president between 2000 and 2008, when he was forced to stand down by the Constitution. He became prime minister after the inauguration of his hand-picked successor, Dmitry Medvedev. The two men are now expected to swap jobs.