Negotiations between Russia and North Korea are “actively progressing” on a possible deal for the North Korean regime to deliver a “significant” amount of ammunition, including artillery, to the Russian military. These negotiations show the desperation of Kremlin officials to acquire new military equipment amid military setbacks in the war in Ukraine, according to the latest data provided by US intelligence. At the same time, the Biden administration has expressed concern about these negotiations, CNN reports.
North Korean officials have publicly denied the existence of such negotiations.
The Russian Minister of Defense, Sergei Shoigu, was present in North Korea last month, where he was received with military honors.
The stated purpose of the visit was to take part in Pyongyang’s celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the end of the Korean War, typically marked by massive military parades. According to military analysts, beyond these official explanations, the real purpose of the Russian Defense Chief’s visit was related to Moscow’s demand for North Korean weapons and ammunition.
A second delegation of Russian officials was in Pyongyang, after Shoigu’s visit, to continue discussions regarding the conclusion of a military agreement.
In parallel, Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un exchanged letters in which they emphasized “the need to strengthen bilateral relations,” according to John Kirby, coordinator of the US National Security Council.
“We remain concerned that the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea is considering militarily assisting Russian armed forces operating in Ukraine, and we have new information to share with you today that negotiations between Russia and the DPRK are moving forward. actively,” Kirby said.
“After the negotiations, more high-level talks will follow in the coming months,” the US official said. “Following the conclusion of an agreement, Russia would benefit from significant quantities of ammunition from the DPRK, which the Russian military intends to use in Ukraine. The agreement may also include the delivery of raw materials, necessary for Russia’s military industry.”
According to Kirby, the fact that Russia is turning to the DPRK as well as Iran for weapons and ammunition betrays the difficult situation in which the Putin regime finds itself. “Frankly, this shows nothing but desperation and weakness,” the US official said.
Editor : M.L.