Noting the 100th anniversary of Albania’s independence, Kim Yong Nam, reclusive leader of North Korea, sent greetings to President Bujar Nishani on Wednesday.“Kim Yong Nam, president of the Presidium of the DPRK Supreme People’s Assembly, Wednesday sent a message of greeting to Albanian President Bujar Nishani on the occasion of the national day,” Pyongyang’s KCNA news agency said.
“In the message Kim wished the President [of Albania] success in his work for the development and prosperity of the country,” it added.
Albania declared its independence from the Ottoman Empire on November 28, 1912, and the government has marked the occasion with several days of festivities this week.
Under the Communist regime, Albania had diplomatic ties to North Korea, which remains one of the most isolated countries in the world.
Albania’s own isolation under the Stalinist regime of Enver Hoxha was often likened to that of North Korea.
Kim meanwhile made headlines recently, after an ironic write-up on the US-based Onion website named him the “sexiest man alive.”
The story was interpreted erroneously by the People’s Daily, the official paper of the ruling Chinese Communist Party, which congratulated the Korean leader.
“This Pyongyang-bred heartthrob is every woman’s dream come true,” the Chinese paper quoted the Onion as saying, evidently unaware of the jokey nature of the comments.