Denis Rodman is back in North Korea competing with Gareth Morgan for the despot’s affections.
Flamboyant former basketball star Dennis Rodman will arrive in Pyongyang today for a five-day visit to North Korea, his second this year, but has said he has no plans to negotiate the release of a jailed American missionary.
There had been speculation that Rodman, who met North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in March, would secure the release of Kenneth Bae who was jailed for 15 years for trying to overthrow the North Korean government.
“I’m not going to North Korea to discuss freeing Kenneth Bae,” Rodman told Reuters in a telephone interview. “I’m just going there on another basketball diplomacy tour.”
Kim, the third of his line to rule North Korea is a basketball fan and appeared to get on well with Rodman on the earlier visit, with the two of them pictured laughing, eating and drinking together and watching an all-star basketball match.
Rodman’s latest trip is being sponsored by Irish bookmaker Paddy Power.
“I’ve come out here to see my friend (Kim) – and I want to talk about basketball,” he added, speaking from Beijing, the usual transit point for flights into Pyongyang.
You know what I’d like to see…Kim Dotcom visit Kim Jong-un…and decide to stay.