The United States will press for further action over North Korea’s provocations and other breaches of international law, a senior U.S. official said Friday, after a recent summit between Pyongyang and Moscow deepened concerns about a potential arms deal between them.
National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan made the remarks, assessing that North Korea’s talks with Russia over its potential supply of weapons for use in the war in Ukraine have continued to “advance.”
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin held a rare summit at a Russian spaceport Wednesday, as Kim apparently wants military technology cooperation from Russia with Putin seeking more ammunition from the North.
“We will continue to press for further action in New York in response to provocations and other steps that North Korea takes that are in violation of international law,” Sullivan told a press briefing on President Joe Biden’s plan to attend the U.N. General Assembly next week.
Asked to offer his evaluation of the meeting between Kim and Putin, Sullivan said, “Our view has been before (Kim’s) visit and after the visit that talks about the provision of weapons by North Korea to Russia to kill Ukrainians have been advancing and continue to advance.”
Pointing to his trilateral call with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts, Cho Tae-yong and Takeo Akiba, Thursday, Sullivan highlighted that the close alignment between Seoul, Washington and Tokyo is enough to respond to any collaboration between Kim and Putin.
“The three of us had the opportunity to compare notes on this and to coordinate what steps we will take in the coming days and weeks,” he said. “We are very closely aligned on a trilateral basis to respond to anything that Russia chooses to do with North Korea on a going forward basis.”
At this week’s summit, Putin signaled an intention to help the North with satellite technology, while Kim voiced his support for the Russian leader.
U.S. officials have warned that an arms deal between North Korea and Russia would be in violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions that Moscow itself voted for. (Yonhap)
BY NADEEM FAISAL BAIGA