Jun 20, 2024

Russia and North Korea Sign Defense Pact

Putin and Kim
RevBlogTranscriptsNorth KoreaRussia and North Korea Sign Defense Pact

Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong Un signed a mutual defense pact promising to help each other if attacked. Read the transcript here.

Speaker 1 (00:01):

Russian President, Vladimir Putin, and North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, signed a mutual defense pact on Wednesday, promising to help each other if attacked. Putin has courted Kim with gifts of limousines, and a tour of Russia’s new space launch center, as well as steepening military cooperation, which has alarmed the United States and its Asian allies. Kim spoke at a rare press conference, announcing the signing of a comprehensive strategic partnership.

Kim Jong Un (00:31):

Our two countries’ relations have been elevated to the new higher level of an alliance, laying the legal groundwork for the grand ideas of leadership of the two countries, and longing of our people to build a strong country, while firmly protecting the peace and security in the region and the world, in line with the common interests of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and the Russian Federation.

Speaker 1 (00:53):

At the start of their summit, Kim expressed unconditional support for all of Russia’s policies, including a full support and firm alliance for Putin’s war with Ukraine. Russian media reported Putin said Moscow was fighting the hegemonic imperialist policy of the United States and its allies.

Vladimir Putin (01:14):

We highly appreciate your consistent and unwavering support for Russian policy, including the Ukrainian strand. I’m referring to our fight against the hegemonic policy imposed for decades, the imperialist policy of the United States and its satellites against the Russian Federation.

Speaker 1 (01:39):

This was Putin’s first visit to North Korea in 24 years. He received a lavish welcome in Pyongyang. The visit will likely reshape decades of Russia-North Korea relations at a time when both face international isolation. Seoul and Washington are watching closely, and have expressed concern about the two countries’ growing military ties. The reaction from China, the North’s main political and economic benefactor, and an increasingly important ally for Moscow, has been muted. Russia has used its warming ties with North Korea to needle Washington, while heavily sanctioned North Korea has won political backing and promises of economic support and trade from Moscow. Park Won Gon is a professor of North Korean studies at Ewha Womans University.

Park Won Gon (02:32):

The biggest point of this North Korea-Russia summit is that it has a symbolic meaning. From Kim Jong Un’s point of view, Putin’s visit to North Korea was necessary to improve his diplomatic isolation and image as a rogue state in the international community. I think that’s why he planned this summit as a big political event, since it is also a good opportunity to show his achievements to the North Korean people, which is differentiated from his predecessors.

Speaker 1 (02:59):

The United States and its allies say they fear Russia could provide aid for North Korea’s missile and nuclear programs, which are banned by UN Security Council resolutions. They have also accused Pyongyang of providing ballistic missiles and artillery shells that Russia has used in its war in Ukraine.

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