Rodman says he's going to NKorea to open a door

Esther Moore
Июня 13, 2017

Former NBA star Dennis Rodman is expected to arrive in North Korea later on Tuesday.

Multiple people involved in unofficial talks with North Korea say that the Trump administration has been making overtures toward the Kim regime, including trying to set up a secret back channel to the North Korean leader using "an associate of Trump's" rather than the usual line-up of North Korea experts and former officials who talk to Pyongyang's representatives.

Rodman was mobbed by journalists when he arrived at Beijing's airport on Tuesday to catch a flight for the North Korean capital. He also has been roundly criticized for visiting during times of high tensions between the USA and North Korea over its weapons programs.

According to Japanese daily The Asahi Shimbun, Jong Nam, the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, was carrying US$120,000 when he was killed in February at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (klia2) and is believed to have received the money from the contact.

It was supposedly a birthday gift for Kim who's said to be a big basketball fan.

Rodman's 2013 trip came just two weeks after North Korea conducted the first of three underground nuclear tests it has done under the rule of Kim, who is openly pursuing a nuclear weapon capable of reaching the US mainland.

The statement quotes Rodman as saying: "I want to thank the folks at PotCoin".

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Rodman has made several visits to North Korea.

Rodman was filmed leading a sing-along of "Happy Birthday" to the leader, a man he calls a friend and a "very good guy". It seems unlikely that what this global crisis needed was a little loving from Dennis Rodman, but that might be what we're about to get.

During his 2014 trip to the North, Rodman made remarks that appeared to blame Kenneth Bae, a Korean-American man who was held in captivity in North Korea from 2012-2014, for his detention.

During his last visit in January 2014, Rodman and a group of other former NBA players took part in an exhibition basketball game. Flamboyant former NBA star Dennis Rodman is expected to arrive in Pyongyang on June 13, United States media reported, with the heavily-tattooed former player apparently set for another round of his controversial "basketball diplomacy". "He told me, 'I would love to come to America to go to a New York Knicks game.' He actually said that to me", Rodman told the cadets in the audience.

"They were looking at ways to do that and this was one of the instruments they were looking at, and the foreign ministry thought it was advisable to formally extend an invitation", he told AFP.

North Korea is expecting another vi.

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