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Kremlin rejects West’s claim that North Korea is arming Russia with weapons

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The Kremlin rejected on Tuesday Western accusation of North Korea supplying weapons and ammunition to Russia, said spokesperson Dmitry Peskov.

“This is not only British intelligence; this is also American intelligence. They keep reporting this all the time, but do not provide any evidence,” Peskov said as cited by state news agency Interfax.

The Kremlin spokesperson stressed that Moscow will continue to build mutually beneficial cooperation with Pyongyang based on mutual respect and will “develop ties in all areas.”

“This is our sovereign right and we do not think that anyone has the right to interfere with this,” Peskov said.

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In September, North Korean President Kim Jong Un and Russian President Vladimir Putin held a rare summit in Moscow in which they discussed military cooperation, the war in Ukraine and potential Russian support for North Korea’s satellite program.

Kim also met with Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu and discussed military cooperation and exchanges between the two countries’ armies while they took a tour of Russian weapons systems and vessels.

US and South Korea have expressed concerns that North Korea is supplying Russia with weapons and ammunition to be used in the war on Ukraine.

The White House had said on Friday that North Korea delivered military equipment and ammunition to Russia which the latter will use in its war on Ukraine.

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said: “We condemn the DPRK for providing Russian with this military equipment, which will be used to attack Ukrainian cities and kill Ukrainian civilians and further Russia’s illegitimate war.”

He added: “In return for support, we assess the Pyongyang is seeking military assistance from Russia including fighter aircraft, surface to air missiles, armored vehicles, ballistic missile production equipment, or other materials and other advanced technologies.”

Furthermore, the US, UK, Japan and South Korea had issued in August a statement following Russia's negotiation of potential deals with North Korea for munitions to be used against Ukraine.

“Arms negotiations between Russia and the DPRK are actively advancing… [Russian Minister of Defense Sergey] Shoigu’s visit was more than just a photo op. Russia used this visit to the DPRK to try to convince Pyongyang to sell artillery ammunition to Russia. Since then, Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong Un have exchanged letters pledging to increase their bilateral cooperation,” said the statement issued by the UK government.

It added: “Russia is negotiating potential deals for significant quantities and multiple types of munitions from the DPRK to be used against Ukraine. These potential deals could also include the provision of raw materials that would assist Russia’s defense industrial base.”

The four countries stressed: “We cannot – and we will not – stay silent as we receive more information that Russia continues to turn to rogue regimes to try to obtain weapons and equipment in order to support its brutal war of aggression. We will continue to work with allies and partners to identify, expose, and counter Russian attempts to acquire military equipment from the DPRK or any state that is prepared to support Russia’s war in Ukraine. And we will keep strengthening cooperation to address the DPRK’s weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs.”

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