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Rodman leaves NKorea without word if he met leader

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BEIJING (AP)

Former basketball star Dennis Rodman left North Korea on Monday, but didn't answer questions from the media on whether he had met with leader Kim Jong Un on his latest visit.

The two struck up a friendship when Rodman first traveled to the secretive state earlier this year.

Rodman declined to answer questions from reporters on his arrival at Beijing's airport.

On Sunday night, he told The Associated Press that he had not yet had a meeting with Kim. He arrived in North Korea on Thursday, a week after North Korea announced the execution of Kim's once-powerful uncle, sparking speculation by foreign analysts over the future of the Kim regime.

Rodman's short visit was aimed at finalizing plans to bring 12 ex-NBA players to Pyongyang for a Jan. 8 exhibition game marking Kim's birthday.

Rodman is the highest profile American to meet Kim since the leader inherited power from his father in late 2011.

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