Billy Graham's Son Visits NKorea To Deliver Aid

The son of veteran U.S. evangelist Billy Graham arrived in North Korea on Tuesday to deliver aid to the impoverished communist nation.

Broadcaster APTN in North Korea showed the Rev. Franklin Graham, who leads a Christian relief group, arriving at Pyongyang's airport.

Ri Gun, director general in charge of American affairs at North Korea's Foreign Ministry, greeted Graham at the airport and the two held talks, APTN footage showed. Ri is also North Korea's deputy nuclear negotiator.

The North's official Korean Central News Agency also reported Graham's arrival in a brief dispatch, quoting him as saying he made the visit to "play the role of a bridge for better relations" between the two countries.

Graham leads the U.S.-based aid group Samaritan's Purse, which has provided the impoverished North with more than $10 million in aid since 1997.

The organization said on its Web site that Graham will oversee the delivery of $190,000 in equipment and supplies for a new dental school in Pyongyang, meet with high-level officials and visit one of three hospitals where the group has installed electricity generators.

The group said Graham will visit China later this week.

The latest trip is Graham's third to North Korea. He also visited last year.

Billy Graham's family has had relations with the communist North for years. The senior Graham went to North Korea in 1992 and in 1994 at the invitation of then-North Korean leader Kim Il Sung, father of current leader Kim Jong Il.