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North Korean leader, NBA star watch hoops together

From Steven Jiang, CNN
March 1, 2013 -- Updated 1212 GMT (2012 HKT)
Dennis Rodman visits North Korea

(CNN) -- Former NBA star Dennis Rodman and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un watched a basketball game together in Pyongyang, the Chinese state news agency Xinhua reported Thursday.

READ: Dennis Rodman declares Kim a "friend for life"

The men chatted and laughed throughout at the Wednesday game, Xinhua said. The flamboyant Rodman reportedly spoke after the game, calling himself a friend of Kim and the North Korean people. He and three members of the famed Harlem Globetrotters arrived in North Korea on Tuesday to "entertain and inspire" with their basketball skills while they film a TV show.

The visit comes at a time of heightened tension between the United States and North Korea, a result of Pyongyang's pursuit of a nuclear program. Days ago, North Korea threatened "miserable destruction" in response to routine military exercises planned between South Korea and the United States.

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