Kim Jong-Un Rolls Out The Red Carpet (Literally) For Putin, It's Like A Match Made In HEAVEN...Not.

By Victor Smiroff | Wednesday, 19 June 2024 08:30 PM
Views 1.7K

In a display of camaraderie that has raised eyebrows across the globe, Russian President Vladimir Putin was warmly welcomed by North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un upon his arrival in Pyongyang.

This marks Putin's first visit to the isolated nation in nearly a quarter of a century, a trip that comes amid escalating tensions on the Korean peninsula and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. The two leaders were seen embracing on the tarmac, a gesture that symbolizes the strengthening alliance between their nations.

According to the Daily Mail, the North Korean capital was adorned with banners bearing Putin's smiling face and the words 'we ardently welcome President Putin!' The Russian flags fluttering across Pyongyang were a testament to the deepening ties between the two nations, which have been allies since the end of World War II. The recent invasion of Ukraine by Russia, which has led to Putin's international isolation by the West, has only served to bring Moscow and Pyongyang closer.

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The United States and its allies have accused North Korea of aiding Russia in its military operations in Ukraine by supplying arms, including ballistic missiles. However, North Korea has vehemently denied these allegations. Putin, on the other hand, has publicly expressed his gratitude to Kim Jong Un's government for its support in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. "We highly appreciate that the DPRK (North Korea) is firmly supporting the special military operations of Russia being conducted in Ukraine," Putin wrote in an article published by Pyongyang's state media.

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The Russian leader also lauded North Korea for effectively defending its interests against decades of US economic pressure, provocation, blackmail, and military threats. He further commended the two nations for maintaining a united front at the United Nations. Both Russia and North Korea are currently under a slew of UN sanctions, with the former being penalized for its invasion of Ukraine and the latter for its banned nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

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The official Korean Central News Agency reported that the visit signifies the strengthening of bilateral ties, which are "getting stronger day by day." The agency also stated that the visit would infuse fresh vitality into the development of the good-neighbourly cooperative relations between the two countries.

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Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba called on the international community to counter the growing alliance between Putin and Kim by increasing arms supplies to Kyiv. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, meanwhile, pointed out Putin's dependence on authoritarian leaders, naming North Korea, Iran, and China as the biggest supporters of Russia's war effort.

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Despite the allegations of supplying weapons to Russia, North Korea has described these claims as 'absurd.' However, it did express gratitude to Russia for using its UN veto in March to effectively end the monitoring of sanctions violations just as UN experts were beginning to investigate alleged arms transfers.

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The United States expressed concern about Putin's visit due to its potential security implications for South Korea and Ukraine. The two Koreas have technically been at war since their 1950-53 conflict, and the border dividing them is one of the most heavily fortified in the world.

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In a separate incident highlighting the volatile security situation in the region, South Korean troops fired at soldiers from North Korea who briefly crossed the border before retreating. The South Korean military believes that the North Korean soldiers accidentally crossed the border while fortifying it, resulting in some of them being wounded after detonating landmines.

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Meanwhile, an overnight drone attack set several oil storage tanks ablaze near the town of Azov in southern Russia, sparking a large fire. Ukraine did not immediately claim responsibility for the attack, but it has previously targeted Russian energy facilities, arguing that they fuel Moscow's military operations.

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On the battlefield, Ukraine reported that Russian forces were attempting to enter the outskirts of Chasiv Yar, a flashpoint town in the war-torn eastern region of Donetsk. The Kremlin claims this region as part of Russia, and its capture could accelerate Russian advances.

As the world watches the unfolding events with bated breath, the strengthening alliance between Russia and North Korea serves as a stark reminder of the shifting geopolitical landscape. The implications of this alliance, both for the ongoing conflict in Ukraine and the tense situation on the Korean peninsula, are yet to be fully understood.

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