Looking back on history of development of DPRK-Angola friendly relations

November 23, 2022

November 16 marked the 47th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the Republic of Angola.

On this occasion, I recall with deep emotion the history of development of traditional ties of friendship and cooperation between the two countries, for I had once worked as ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary of the DPRK to the Republic of Angola for several years.

Though geographically distant across oceans and continents, the DPRK and Angola share a long-standing tradition and history spanning over more than half a century.

The great leader Comrade Kim Il Sung had always paid special attention to the national liberation struggle of Angola, and when Antonio Agostinho Neto, then chairman of the Popular Liberation Movement of Angola, visited our country in September 1968 and August 1971, he gave him detailed teachings on the issues arising in the struggle for independence and also provided him with unreserved material assistance.

When Angola achieved its independence on November 11 1975, President Kim Il Sung was the first to send a high-level delegation to congratulate its independence. He also saw to it that our country established diplomatic relations with Angola on November 16 the same year.

President Kim Il Sung would address Jose Eduardo Dos Santos, the then Angolan President who visited our country as many as three times, as an “old friend”, took meticulous care lest he should feel any slightest inconvenience during his stay in our country and also sent him presents and restorative foods on several occasions.

For the past forty-seven years since the forming of diplomatic ties, the two countries have constantly strengthened and developed the friendly relations across all fields including politics, the economy, military affairs and culture, upholding the banner of Non-Aligned Movement, and building on the foundation of friendly relations laid under the special care of the President.

Therefore, former President Santos, whenever he met me, told me that he would never forget the selfless assistance rendered by Kim Il Sung to the Angolan people in their struggle for independence and building of a new society and also told me time and again that Angola regards the brotherly bond with the DPRK as its great honour and pride. President Lourenco as well, affirmed his commitment to the continued development of historical relations between the two countries, vividly recalling the days of his visit to our country.

My tenure as an ambassador to the friendly country of Angola was an opportunity for me to feel deep in my heart the friendly feelings existing between the two peoples, I think.

My personal experiences during my tenure still come to my mind as vividly as if it were only yesterday: the 40th Independence Day celebration held in splendor at the Memorial of Antonio Agostinho Neto established as a symbol of friendship and cooperation between the two countries at the very centre of its capital city of Luanda; the unveiling ceremony of the Monument to the Victory of Cuito Cuanavale Battle where I could have first-hand look at the successes gained by the government and people of Angola; and the looks of Angolan people who were so appreciative of the DPRK doctors treating the local patients in every part of the country, be it the capital city or a remote and secluded place in the mountains.

I am positive about the prospects of the bilateral relations. They will continue to strengthen and develop under the ideals of independence, peace and friendship, and in the mutual interests of the two peoples.

Kim Hyon Il, former DPRK ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary to the Republic of Angola

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