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N. Korean plane arrives in Vladivostok for 1st time in over 3 years: reportBy Yonhap
Published : Aug. 25, 2023 - 22:08
VLADIVOSTOK -- A flight operated by Air Koryo, North Korea's national carrier, arrived in Russia's far eastern city of Vladivostok on Friday, a Russian news agency reported, marking the resumption of a commercial flight connecting the two countries after more than three years of COVID-19 restrictions.
The flight, which departed from Pyongyang, arrived at Vladivostok International Airport at 11:14 a.m., Russian news agency RIA Novosti said.
According to sources, the plane did not carry any passengers onboard.
Russian media outlets had previously reported that Koryo flights were scheduled Friday and next Monday, but flight schedules remained unannounced.
Friday afternoon, the electric bulletin board at the airport showed Air Koryo's JS-272 flight, originally set to head to Pyongyang at 1:15 p.m., was delayed until 1:45 p.m. It did not have information on the counter number.
RIA Novosti reported passengers were seen preparing to get onboard by the time the Koryo plane arrived in Vladivostok, despite no prior notice about the flight.
By 3:10 p.m., the JS-272 was believed to have left for Pyongyang, as the flight schedule had disappeared from the board.
Airport workers declined to comment on the flight, but one person said North Korea was believed to have brought its citizens who stayed in Russia due to the border closure back home.
North Korea had suspended the semiweekly operations of Air Koryo's Tu-240 since February 2020 over public health concerns due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The flight was the only air service connecting the two nations.
Earlier this week, Air Koryo resumed operating direct commercial flights with China in a sign of Pyongyang's border reopening. (Yonhap)
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