Britain's Queen have sent a message to North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un as his country marked its National Day last week.
Buckingham Palace reportedly confirmed that Her Majesty sent the communication via the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.
North Korean media said the message was received on September 7, two days before the communist state celebrated the 73rd anniversary of its founding.
The Queen sent a message to mark North Korea's national day https://t.co/mN1MUatt9g— Daily Express (@Daily_Express) September 15, 2021
The message said: 'As the people of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea celebrate their national day, I send my good wishes for the future.'
Whilst the goodwill note was not shared with British media or on Buckingham Palace's social media accounts, the Queen is understood to have marked the day with a similar message in the past.
However, this is believed to be the first time that the message has been made public.
Her Majesty acts on the advice of the foreign office when she sends messages to foreign leaders.
A Foreign Office spokesman said: 'As in previous years, The Queen has sent a message to the people of the DPRK on the occasion of their national day.'
Confirmation of the sending of the message came as North Korea announced it had successfully tested new long-range cruise missiles.
It hailed the missiles - which allegedly flew more than 900 miles - as a 'strategic weapon of great significance,' suggesting that they were developed with the intent of arming them with nuclear warheads.
Amid the rising tensions with its neighbour South Korea, a leading expert on the region told The Telegraph it was an 'interesting time' for the UK to be sending a 'gesture of friendship' via Her Majesty.
'With North Korea in the doghouse, it's an interesting time for us to send a gesture of friendship,' said Aidan Foster-Carter, a North Korea expert and honorary senior research fellow in sociology at Leeds University.
This year's National Day featured a night-time military parade overseen by smiling dictator Kim in capital Pyongyang's Kim Il Sung square.
👑The Queen has sent a message to Kim Jong-un, passing on her “good wishes” to the people of North Korea on their national day https://t.co/yRkDMaJ8kr— The Telegraph (@Telegraph) September 15, 2021
The Queen's message was also published in the official newspaper, Rodong Sinmun, on Sunday.
State media network KCNA announced the Queen's message in a news report.
It said: 'Kim Jong Un, president of the State Affairs of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), received a message of greeting from Elizabeth II, queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, on September 7.'
In 2014, North Korea's then second most powerful man - Kim Yong-nam - sent the Queen a congratulatory letter to mark her official birthday.
The official Korean Central News Agency reported that the message 'wished the queen good health and happiness'.
The letter also reportedly wished 'well-being and prosperity' to the British people.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
© Associated Newspapers Ltd.