SEOUL, June 3 (Yonhap) -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has sent a birthday message to Raul Castro, the first secretary of Cuba's communist party, stressing "strategic" and "comradely" relations between the two countries, state media reported Wednesday.
"The message extended warm comradely greetings to Raul Castro Ruz with best wishes on his 89th birthday," the Korean Central News Agency said.
"It expressed the belief that the strategic and comradely relations of friendship and cooperation between the two parties and two countries based on a long history and tradition will be invariably carried forward and developed," it added.
North Korea and Cuba have maintained close relations since establishing diplomatic ties in 1960, and they have recently stepped up efforts to strengthen bilateral ties.
In November 2018, Cuban President Miguel Mario Diaz-Canel Bermudez visited Pyongyang for three days. In May last year, a North Korean delegation led by Ri Su-yong, vice chairman of the Workers' Party, visited the island nation.
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