Ukraine updates: US warns North Korea against arming Russia

The US says Pyongyang will "pay a price" if it arms Russia with weapons for its war in Ukraine

Ukraine updates: US warns North Korea against arming Russia (photo: DW)
Ukraine updates: US warns North Korea against arming Russia (photo: DW)


The White House has issued a warning to North Korea, asking it to abide by its international commitments and not provide weapons to Russia that could kill Ukrainians.

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said North Korea, already isolated on the world stage, would "pay a price" if it decided to supply Moscow with arms.

A possible meeting between Russian president Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has raised concerns about what cooperation between the two countries could mean.

Sullivan told reporters that Pyongyang and Moscow seem to be contemplating "leader-level discussions, perhaps even in person".

The meeting between Putin and Kim could be to discuss possible deals for weapons transfer. Moscow could use additional supplies to "try to conquer territory that belongs to another sovereign nation" is the US concern.

"This is not going to reflect well on North Korea and they will pay a price for this in the international community," Sullivan added.

The Kremlin said on Tuesday, 5 September, that it was unable to confirm reports of a potential meeting, with spokesman Dmitry Peskov saying, "We have nothing to say on this."

A meeting with Putin would be Kim's first summit with a foreign leader since North Korea closed its borders in January 2020.

They met for the first time in April 2019, two months after Kim's high-stakes nuclear diplomacy with former US President Donald Trump collapsed.

Putin 'desperate' if he's turning to Pyongyang, says German lawmaker

German lawmaker Falko Drossmann also told DW that he is concerned about reports of a meeting between the leaders of Russia and North Korea because it shows Moscow is "desperate" to acquire new weaponry.

"How desperate Vladimir Putin is, that the last state he can cooperate with... is North Korea," said Drossman, who is from the centre-left Social Democrats party.

Drossman also said that it was clear that sanctions were hurting Russia and the country now had a problem.

"They [Russia] don't have new weapons. They don't have modern technology. So they have to use very old-fashioned USSR weaponry, especially artillery, and that's actually the ammunition North Korea can provide because they still use the same weaponry."

On whether he was concerned about the warming of ties between the two countries, particularly given North Korea's nuclear ambitions, Drossmann said a bigger concern was "Russia starting a war in the centre of Europe and killing thousands".

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