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South Korea to reconsider Ukraine weapons supplies in response to Russia-North Korea pact

by Chris York June 20, 2024 2:39 PM 2 min read
Russia's President Vladimir Putin (L) and North Korea's leader Kim Jong-Un (R) attend a welcoming ceremony at Kim Il Sung Square in Pyongyang on June 19, 2024. (Gavril Grigorov/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)
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South Korea has said it will reconsider its policy of not directly supplying Ukraine with weapons in response to Moscow's newly-announced pact with North Korea, the country's president's office said on June 20.

Up until now, Seoul has only provided humanitarian aid to Kyiv, though it has been reported the country has indirectly supplied artillery shells via the U.S.

The possibility of direct supplies to Ukraine is now being considered after Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korea dictator Kim Jong-Un signed a security agreement in Pyongyang on June 19.

"The government clearly emphasizes that any cooperation that directly or indirectly helps North Korea increase its military power is a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions and is subject to monitoring and sanctions by the international community," the South Korean president's office said in a statement reported by the Associated Press (AP).

Under the new treaty, Russia and North Korea pledged to provide aid to one another if either is attacked, Putin said at a press conference after the signing ceremony.

Putin arrived in North Korea on June 18 in a sign of the deepening military cooperation between the two countries, as Pyongyang supplied Moscow with large quantities of ammunition and missiles for use on Ukrainian battlefields.

The two leaders led hours-long talks before signing the treaty.

The North Korean dictator claimed the agreement is of a "peaceful and defensive nature" and called Russia his country's "most honorable friend and ally."

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