North Korea replaces its foreign minister: report

North Korea replaces its foreign minister: report
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North Korea’s foreign minister has been replaced this week, Seoul-based NK News  reported Saturday, in a move that could represent a major political shuffling and impact Pyongyang’s foreign policy.

The new minister will replace 38-year foreign relations veteran Ri Yong Ho, who had served as North Korea’s foreign minister since 2016. 

Though his replacement was not identified, NK News reported that their identity will be unveiled on or before Jan. 23, when an event for resident diplomats is scheduled to take place.

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Ri was Pyongyang’s top diplomat during a stretch of historic outreach from North Korea, often joining leader Kim Jong UnKim Jong UnWe should listen to John Bolton Donald Trump: Unrepentant, on the attack and still playing the victim Trump's 'two steps forward, one step backward' strategy with China MORE in recent years to summits with leaders from the U.S., South Korea, Russia, China and Cuba.

Prior to his role as foreign minister, Ri also served as ambassador in London and as vice foreign minister.

However, his departure from the government appeared to be foreshadowed by his absence from a group picture of top party officials earlier this month. 

News of Ri’s replacement comes as the Yonhap News Agency reported that Pyongyang's  ambassadors to China and the United Nations were seen returning to North Korea.