Putin to forge closer relationship with North Korea as Russia looks for security in allies

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The Russian President told his North Korean counterpart that their two countries will “expand the comprehensive and constructive bilateral relations with common efforts”, reported Pyongyang’s state media on Monday.

In the letter sent to Kim for North Korea’s Liberation Day, which falls on August 15, Putin stated that “closer ties would be in both countries’ interests, and would help strengthen the security and stability of the Korean peninsula and the Northeastern Asian region”, said North Korea’s KCNA news agency.

The communist country, one of the world’s most isolated, is one of the few to support Russia’s military campaign in Ukraine.

While many Western countries are distancing themselves from Moscow through imposing sanctions and stopping travel there, Putin has found allies in North Korea, Belarus, China and Iran.

Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko has openly backed Putin’s efforts, although Chinese President Xi Jinping has officially maintained a neutral stance.

However, trade between China and Russia has significantly increased, with Russian oil imports up 55 percent.

Iranian Minister of Oil Javad Owji said in June that Russian-Iranian bilateral trade reached $40billion (£33billion) over the last 18 months, a tenfold increase on 2021’s $4billion (£3.3billion), the Express has reported.

Kyiv has claimed that Iran has been providing Putin with military technology armed drones and satellites.

Kim Jong Un reportedly offered the Kremlin 100,000 of its own troops to help with the war effort, according to Russian state media.

Relations between Russia and North Korea go back to the days of the Soviet Union, when the USSR supplied its ally with aid.

Since the breakup of the USSR in 1991, North Korea has been plunged into extreme poverty due to Russia no longer accepting the almost worthless North Korean currency as payment for goods.

According to the Mirror, there are concerns that if Putin chooses to restore relations to where they were in the Soviet days, he may begin to send goods to North Korea for almost nothing.

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Both nations are also known for their boasting of their military prowess.

North Korea was believed to have created at least 60 warheads through production at its main nuclear facility north of Pyongyang.

The North last conducted a missile test back in September 2017, however, there are fears that Kim Jong Un wants to carry out another test soon.

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