A North Korean diplomat and trade representative fled a consulate in Vladivostok, Russia. The diplomat, who remains unidentified, defected in July with his wife and children to South Korea through a third country, Yonhap reported.
A source in Russia who spoke to the South Korean news agency on the condition of anonymity said the “secretary-level” official also took substantial amounts of cash that belongs to Pyongyang.
North Korea’s embassies abroad are often tasked with commercial enterprises, often illegal, in order to earn foreign currency for the regime. In Russia, North Korean trade representatives are also responsible for acquiring necessary goods.
The defection took place in early July before the high-profile defection of Thae Yong Ho in August, and the defection of another Russia-based trade representative, Kim Chol Song, from St. Petersburg.