Russia and North Korea appear to be making arrangements for a summit between President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Russia's Far East.
Russia's presidential spokesperson Dmitry Peskov announced on Saturday that Putin is scheduled to visit the far eastern city of Vladivostok on Monday and Tuesday to attend an international conference called the Eastern Economic Forum. The four-day conference is set to open on Sunday in the city.
Peskov said the president will deliver a speech at a plenary session on Tuesday.
He said foreign guests at the economic forum will include high-ranking officials from Laos and China, and that he had "nothing to say" about a possible visit by the North Korean leader.
China's foreign ministry says Vice Premier Zhang Guoqing will attend the forum.
Local government officials in the maritime region told NHK that Kim will likely leave North Korea on Monday on board a special train.
At a station in Vladivostok, a crane was used to paint the walls of the station building and wash away stains in a cleanup operation that ended on Saturday.
Putin apparently seeks to discuss with the North Korean leader the possibility of the North supplying weapons as the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues.