The Latest: Kim heads to Russia for summit with Putin

A man passes by a TV screen showing images of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, during a news program at the Seoul Railway Station in Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, April 23, 2019. North Korea confirmed Tuesday that Kim will soon visit Russia to meet with Putin in a summit that comes at a crucial moment for tenuous diplomacy meant to rid the North of its nuclear arsenal. The screen reads: "Kim Jong Un visits Russia soon." (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)
FILE - In this Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019, file photo, President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un take a walk after their first meeting at the Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi hotel, in Hanoi. North Korea on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 confirmed that leader Kim Jong Un will soon visit Russia to meet with Putin in a rare summit. For Russia, a meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un offers a chance to raise its influence in the region and gain more leverage with Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)
FILE - This combination file photo, shows Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, in St. Petersburg, Russia, April 9, 2019, and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Hanoi, Vietnam, on Feb. 28, 2019. When Kim meets with Putin for their first one-on-one meeting, he will have a long wish list and a strong desire to notch a win after the failure of his second summit with U.S. President Donald Trump in February 2019. (AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky, Evan Vucci, File)
A worker adjusts the flag of Russia and North Korea along the road in Russky Island, off the southern tip of Vladivostok, Tuesday, April. 23, 2019. Preparations are underway for a summit between the leader of North Korea and Russia's president, Russian officials and media reported Tuesday. Russian media have widely reported that the leaders will meet in the port city of Vladivostok on the Pacific Ocean. (Naoya Osato/Kyodo News via AP)
FILE - In this Thursday, May 31, 2018 file photo, Korean leader Kim Jong Un, left, and Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov shake hands during a meeting in Pyongyang, North Korea. North Korea on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 confirmed that leader Kim Jong Un will soon visit Russia to meet with Putin in a rare summit. For Russia, a meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un offers a chance to raise its influence in the region and gain more leverage with Washington. (Valery Sharifulin/TASS News Agency Pool Photo via AP, File)

MOSCOW — The Latest on Kim-Putin meeting (all times local):

1:15 a.m.

North Korea says leader Kim Jong Un has left for a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The North's state media say Kim departed Pyongyang by his special train at dawn Wednesday as he heads to Russia with top officials.

Kremlin adviser Yuri Ushakov told Russian news agencies on Tuesday that the Kim-Putin summit will take place Thursday at Vladivostok, a Russia city on the Pacific.

Ushakov said the meeting will focus on North Korea's nuclear program.

Kim's Russia trip comes about two months after his high-stakes nuclear summit with U.S. President Donald Trump ended without any agreement because of disputes over U.S.-led sanctions on the North.

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4:25 p.m.

A Kremlin adviser says that President Vladimir Putin will meet the North Korean leader in Russia's Far East on Thursday.

Yuri Ushakov told Russian news agencies on Tuesday that the much-anticipated talks between Putin and Kim Jong Un would be held in Vladivostok on the Pacific Ocean and would focus on North Korea's nuclear program.

Local media have reported preparations and strict security measures undertaken in Vladivostok where the Korean leader is expected to arrive by train.

Kim had two summits with U.S. President Donald Trump, but the latest one in Vietnam in February collapsed because North Korea wanted more sanctions relief than the United States was willing to give for the amount of nuclear disarmament.

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10:20 a.m.

Preparations are underway for a summit between the leader of North Korea and Russia's president.

The Kremlin confirmed earlier this month that Kim Jong Un would meet with President Putin before the end of the month but has not named the place or date, citing security concerns.

Russia's port city of Vladivostok on the Pacific Ocean, in the meantime, is seeing a number of unusually strict security measures.

Maritime authorities said on Tuesday that the waters around Russky Island, the likely summit venue, will be closed for all maritime traffic between Wednesday morning and Friday morning. Separately, local media reported that several platforms at Vladivostok's main train station will be closed for several days.

Kim, like his father, avoids air travel and is likely to travel to Vladivostok by train.

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