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Pyongyang reconfirms stronger ties with Russia despite warning

Nov. 11, 2023 - 13:44 By Yonhap
United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) shakes hands with South Korean Foreign Minister Park Jin ahead of their bilateral talks in Seoul on Thursday. (Yonhap)

North Korea said Saturday that its relations with Russia will remain strong despite the United States' warning against their arms transfers.

In a statement issued by a spokesperson for the North's foreign ministry, Pyongyang also said the US should be accustomed to the new reality of growing relations between the North and Russia.

On Friday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in Seoul that Russia is providing "technology and support" for North Korea's military programs, as Pyongyang is believed to be trying to make yet another attempt to launch a military satellite.

After talks with Seoul's foreign minister Park Jin, Blinken also said the two sides discussed ways to intensify pressure on Moscow not to transfer military technology to Pyongyang.

Pyongyang said, "the irresponsible and provocative remarks of Blinken only escalate the dangerous political and military tension in the Korean peninsula and the region and, moreover, do not help relieve the US of its "concern."

The talks between the top diplomats from Seoul and Washington came after revelations that the North provided Russia with a large amount of munitions and weapons for use in the war in Ukraine under an arms deal apparently reached at the rare September summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The deeper military cooperation between the North and Russia has given rise to the prospect that Pyongyang could be receiving Moscow's technical assistance for its long-range missile program. Seoul officials said the North appears to be readying for a third attempt to launch a military spy satellite after failed attempts in May and August.

Blinken also highlight the importance of China's "constructive role" at a time when Pyongyang appears to be getting closer to Moscow. (Yonhap)