China 'fears losing control over Kim' as Russia bonds with Korean dictator, says former Ukrainian minister

Russian and North Korean dictators Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un at the Vostochny Cosmodrome, September 13, 2023
Russian and North Korean dictators Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un at the Vostochny Cosmodrome, September 13, 2023

China is concerned about Russia's friendship with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, Ukraine's former foreign minister Pavlo Klimkin said in an interview with Radio NV on Nov. 9.

"I have the impression that now Russian plans to cooperate with Kim Jong Un have begun to worry even the Chinese, who in fact have been largely controlling Kim Jong Un," Klimkin stated.

“And this control, with all Putin's blackmail options, may slip out of their hands. So this is a problem for the Chinese as well.”

Ukraine and Western countries can use this factor in their future plans, the diplomat argued.

On Nov. 9, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said during a press conference in Seoul that in exchange for North Korea's supply of military equipment for Russia’s war against Ukraine, Pyongyang could receive support for its ballistic missile program, nuclear technology, and space capabilities.

The United States and its allies are working to identify and counter these efforts, Blinken stated.

Read also: New satellite images suggest North Korea is regularly supplying arms to Russia by sea

In September, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un visited Russia, met with Vladimir Putin, and called Russia's war against Ukraine a "holy struggle."

In October, the White House said that North Korea had transported up to 1,000 containers of"equipment and munitions to Russia in recent weeks."

At the same time, The Washington Post published satellite images showing that Russian ships had repeatedly picked up cargo from North Korea and delivered it to a Russian military port over the past two months.

According to UK weekly news magazine the Economist, Pyongyang is transferring artillery shells and Katyusha rockets to Moscow.

In addition, South Korea reported that since August, the DPRK has sent more than a million artillery rounds to Russia.

Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence confirmed the agreement between Russia and North Korea on the supply of artillery shells, but did not specify the exact number of weapons transferred.

Read also: Defense expert casts doubt on potential impact of purported North Korean arms support for Russia

According to Bloomberg, North Korea has already made about 10 arms deliveries to Russia. These stockpiles could support Russia’s war effort for about two months.

British intelligence has stated that if North Korea maintains the scale and pace of military supplies to Russia, it will become one of the most important arms suppliers to Moscow, along with Iran and Belarus.

However, it is unclear what Russia has agreed to give North Korea in exchange for its help.

Intelligence officials believe that North Korea could receive financial compensation from Russia, economic support, certain military technologies, and cooperation in other high-tech areas such as space.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine