DECEMBER 9, 2022
Russia News

Putin Visits North Korea: Strengthening Ties and Pursuing a New Security Deal

Putin Visits North Korea: Strengthening Ties and Pursuing a New Security Deal

Russian President Vladimir Putin traveled to North Korea for his first state visit in over 20 years, with plans to discuss a new "comprehensive" security deal, closer trade ties, and other "sensitive" issues. Putin arrived in Pyongyang on Tuesday, greeted by a delegation led by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. During his two-day visit, Putin will engage in extensive meetings with Kim and other senior officials.

Prior to his arrival, Putin published an article in North Korea's state-run Rodong Sinmun newspaper, pledging to enhance cooperation in various fields while commending North Korea's "strong support" for Russia's war effort in Ukraine. He emphasized the goal of creating more democratic and stable international relations through alternative trade mechanisms and mutual settlements free from Western control, and building an architecture of equal and indivisible security in Eurasia.

Putin also criticized the United States, describing it as a "global neo-colonial dictatorship based on double standards," accusing Washington of viewing the pursuit of independence and autonomy as a threat to its global dominance.

Putin's foreign policy aide, Yuri Ushakov, indicated that the leaders would address "the most important, the most sensitive issues," including a "Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Agreement." This new pact will override several old security arrangements from the Soviet era, aiming to ensure greater stability in the North-East Asia region without being confrontational or directed against any specific countries. Additional joint documents are expected to be signed during Putin's visit, though details remain sparse.

U.S. officials have repeatedly accused Pyongyang of supplying missiles and artillery shells to Russian forces in Ukraine. Both countries deny these allegations, but G7 leaders recently condemned the growing military cooperation between Russia and North Korea, asserting it violates UN sanctions on the DPRK.

Putin's trip marks his first official visit to North Korea since 2000, following Kim Jong-un's visit to Russia's Far East last year. After that meeting, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced that bilateral ties had reached a "strategic level," with the Kremlin promising even closer cooperation.

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