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Kim Jong-il meets with head of Egyptian mobile firm Orascom

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il met with the head of an Egyptian company that provides mobile phone service in the isolated communist nation, state media reported Monday.

   Naguib Sawiris, chairman and CEO of Orascom Telecom Holding, has been in North Korea for a visit since Friday. The Cairo-based firm has been providing mobile phone service in the North jointly with a local company since late 2008.

   Kim "warmly welcomed his DPRK visit taking place at a time when Orascom's investment is making successful progress in different fields of the DPRK, including telecommunications," Pyongyang's Korean Central News Agency said. DPRK is the acronym for the North's official name.

   Kim had "a cordial talk" with the Egyptian businessman and hosted a dinner for him, the KCNA said.

   Also present at the meeting was Jang Song-thaek, Kim's brother-in-law and vice chairman of the powerful National Defense Commission, the KCNA said.

   It was the first time that Jang's activity has been reported in state media this year.

(Yonhap News)

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