Australia–North Korea relations
The two countries nominally have diplomatic relations, though as of 2013 neither Australia nor North Korea has an official diplomatic presence in the other country. Instead, diplomatic relations between the two are handled by non-resident embassies. The Australian embassy in Seoul manages relations with North Korea, whereas the DPRK embassy in Jakarta is responsible for their relations with Australia. Additionally, the Swedish embassy in Pyongyang provides limited assistance to Australians.
In 2003, in an event called Pong Su incident, the North Korean ship Pong Su was discovered in the Australian waters while its crew members were smuggling illegal drugs. The ship attempted an escape and was taken over by the Australian commandos after four days chase.
In January 2008, North Korea closed its embassy in Canberra. In January 2013, North Korea requested permission to reopen its Canberra embassy, despite Australia supporting increased international sanctions against the country due to its continued nuclear regime. This was declined by Australia in June 2013.
The Australian Ambassador to South Korea, William Paterson, took an official four day trip in June 2016 to North Korea, which included meetings with government officials in Pyongyang as well as travelling outside the capital to inspect Australian aid funded projects.
Former Australian embassy
The Australian Embassy in Pyongyang was opened on 30 April 1975 by John Watson, Resident Charge. Watson had a staff of about six, with some local employees. Stephen FitzGerald, who was resident Ambassador to China, was accredited Ambassador to North Korea. He presented his credentials to North Korea's vice president on 30 May 1975.
The embassy was closed on 8 November 1975 following inter-Governmental problems and Australian staff were withdrawn. Australia did not withdraw the accreditation of its non-resident Ambassador to North Korea, but did not renew the accreditation when it changed ambassadors to China. Talks on re-establishing diplomatic ties between the two countries were had in 1979, and again in 1990, but relations weren't resumed until May 2000, and the Embassy in Seoul has been accredited to North Korea since August 2008.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Relations of Australia and North Korea.|
- "Democratic People's Republic of Korea". Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Archived from the original on 4 April 2013. Retrieved 25 August 2013.
- "Embassies in North Korea". Everything2. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
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- 2013 World Service Poll BBC
- Wroe, David. "North Korea moves to open embassy in Canberra".
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- Macdonald, Hamish (29 June 2016). "Australian Ambassador to South Korea visits North Korea". NK News. Retrieved 20 July 2016.
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