North Korea troops in Syria to help Assad: report

In this July 27, 2013, file photo, North Korean soldiers turn and look towards their leader Kim Jong Un as they carry packs marked with the nuclear symbol as they parade during a ceremony marking the 60th anniversary of the Korean War armistice in Pyongyang, North Korea. (AP)

North Korean military units are in Syria to help President Bashar al-Assad’s forces, a member of the Saudi-backed Syrian opposition recently claimed.

“Two North Korean units are there, which are Chalma-1 and Chalma-7,” Asaad al-Zoubi, who is heading a delegation for the Syrian opposition’s High Negations Committee (HNC) to the upcoming Geneva talks told state-owned Russian news agency TASS.

Zoubi, who is a former colonel in the Syrian Arab Army, currently heads the rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA) south of the country, dubbed the North Korean fighters as “fatally dangerous.”

This is not the first time an opposition official claimed that North Korea is providing support to the regime.

Burhan Ghalioun, former president of another opposition group called the Syrian National Council, said in 2013 that North Korean pilots were flying in the Syrian Air Force.

In early 2014, the UK-based Jane’s Defence Weekly, a magazine specializing in military and defense activity, reported that North Korea was assisting in improving missile capabilities.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:48 - GMT 06:48