Pyongyang rejected US claims of arms sales to Russia amid the war in Ukraine, and condemned Washington’s “reckless remarks”.
North Korea says it has never supplied weapons to Russia and has no plans to do so, condemning the US claim arms transfers to the Ukraine war as an attempt to “stain” the country’s image.
In a statement released by the Korean Central News Agency on Thursday, an unnamed North Korean defense official said the United States and other hostile forces were “spreading rumors about arms deals”. ” between Pyongyang and Moscow.
“We strongly condemn and sternly warn the US against spreading such anti-DPRK rhetoric,” the official said, using abbreviations of North Korea’s official name.
“We have never exported weapons or ammunition to Russia before and we have no plans to export them,” the official added.
The denial came weeks after Vedant Patel, a deputy spokesman for the US State Department, told reporters that Russia was “in the process of buying millions of missiles and artillery shells from North Korea for use in the North. Ukraine”.
The White House later called it a “potential purchase,” with national security spokesman John Kirby explaining that “there is no indication that the sale is complete and there is certainly no indication that the sale is complete.” does not indicate that such weapons are being used inside Ukraine”.
Earlier this month, newly declassified intelligence reports from the US said Russia buys millions of artillery shells and rockets from North Koreabut don’t go into details.
Any North Korean arms exports to Russia are in violation of United Nations resolutions that ban the country from importing or exporting weapons, and Russia has denied the accusations and asked the United States to provide proof. proof.
Washington also has accused Iran supplied drones to Russia for use in the war in Ukraine, a claim Tehran has denied.
In a statement on KCNA, the North Korean official told the US to stop making “reckless remarks” and “keep its mouth shut”, but continued to reiterate its “legitimate right” to export and import equipment. be militarily if they wish to do so. . The official stressed that Pyongyang has never recognized the “illegal” UN Security Council sanctions against it “made up by the US and its vassal forces”.
North Korea has sought to deepen ties with Russia even as most of the world condemns Moscow’s war in Ukraine.
North Korea has blamed the US for the crisis, saying the West’s “hegemonic policy” justifies Russia’s military action against Ukraine as a way to protect itself. Kyiv, meanwhile, relationship is severed when Pyongyang in July recognized two Russian-backed breakaway “people’s republics” in eastern Ukraine as independent states.
The leaders of Russia and North Korea recently also correspondence talk about their relationship.
In a letter to North Korea’s liberation, Russian President Vladimir Putin told North Korean leader Kim Jong Un that the two countries will “expand comprehensive and constructive bilateral relations with great efforts.” shared”. Kim also sent a letter to Putin saying that “strategic and tactical cooperation, support and solidarity” between the two countries has reached new heights amid their joint efforts to prevent threats and provocations from “hostile military forces”.
North Korea has also used war as a window to accelerate its own weapons development, testing dozens of weapons including its first long-range missile since 2017.
The tests come amid divisions in the United Nations Security Council, where Russia and China have blocked US efforts to tighten sanctions on Pyongyang.