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Russia And North Korea With China; A Potential Alliance Against The West and A Threat To World Peace?

Amid increasing isolation and Sanctions by the West due to the Ukraine War, Russia is seeking to build a 'United' alliance against the 'Hostile' West, aligning not only with China but also potentially with North Korea and its strong military. 


Recently, North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un was on a 6-day trip to Russia. During his visit, Mr. Kim and Mr. Putin, the President of Russia met at the Vostochny Cosmodrome, a Spaceport in Far East Russia. Experts Speculate that they discussed banned arms transfer and other cooperation while engaging in a confrontation against the West, According to Media Reports.


Details regarding the agreements during the extensive meeting between Putin and Kim, which included a tour of the Vostochny Cosmodrome, private discussions, and a grand state dinner where they celebrated their nations' deepening friendship, have not been publicly disclosed by North Korea or Russia.


This Ukraine war has caused Russia to reconsider its relationship with North Korea, looking to obtain weapons to replace their depleted supplies. Putin's interest in North Korea is due to the presence of an abundance of stockpiles of ageing ammunition and rockets for Soviet-era weapons. The ability to use these munitions with Soviet-era weapons gives Russia a tactical edge, potentially strengthening its military capabilities in the current conflict due to the shortage of shells.


Being the first country to provide a substantial amount of ammunition for Russian artillery, North Korea responded affirmatively after Russia reached out to China, North Korea, and Iran. Moreover, North Korea is the only nation that has strongly supported Russia at the UN. North Korea’s Kim Jong Un announced “full and unconditional support” for Russia’s Vladimir Putin. He also ordered unspecified steps to further develop relations with Russia after his recent visit to the country.


North Korea's interest in cooperation with Russia


Kim is actively seeking assistance from Russia to advance the development of military reconnaissance satellites. It is significant to enhance the capabilities of North Korea's nuclear-capable missiles. North Korea has previously faced challenges in successfully deploying its inaugural military spy satellite into orbit.


Pyongyang has always prioritised the development of nuclear weapons and missiles, at the cost of people's livelihoods. But North Korea also requires food and economic aid from Moscow to address its shortages and sustain its regime.


China Factor


China might perceive greater benefits than risks in this emerging alliance, especially concerning its rivalry with the US for great power influence. China is expected to encourage and welcome enhanced coordination with Russia and North Korea, considering them as a potential counterweight to the West and its allies, amid rising tensions with the US.


Some speculate that Russia and North Korea know how important China is to them as an economic lifeline and to have a strong axis against the West. This rare meeting between Kim and Putin, might have the involvement of China in the background because the two leaders met at a spaceport that is just 200 miles away from the border of China.


However, The Chinese Foreign Ministry emphasised that the recent meeting was a matter "between the two countries," indicating that they consider it outside of China's direct involvement.


Although there are potential benefits, experts caution that China could still face risks if Russia or North Korea strengthen further. China, like the two countries, can face sanctions and isolation from the West affecting its trade. This can also cause damage to China's image as the peacemaker in the Ukraine war that China has initiated in order to gain back its lost goodwill in Europe.


Threaten World Peace?


Russia's foreign rivals have warned that this cooperation on military weapons would be dangerous and bring consequences to world peace. This meeting has caused tensions in the world, worrying countries from South Korea and Japan to Ukraine, the United States and Europe.


The US has accused North Korea of providing Russia with artillery shells to the Russian mercenary group Wagner, fueling the ongoing Ukraine war and threatening World peace. Also mentioning that buying arms from or providing rocket technology to North Korea would violate international sanctions that Russia has previously supported. Russia and North Korea both have however denied these accusations.


Moreover, Kim Jong Un's pledge of continued support for Moscow, acknowledging Russia's struggle against what he sees as hegemonic forces in defence of its sovereign rights and interests, indicates North Korea's alignment with Russia's stance on the war in Ukraine. Pyongyang's support to Moscow will only stretch the already prolonged Ukrainian war.


Furthermore, South Korea is acutely concerned about potential advanced weapons technologies being provided to North Korea by Russia, including military spy satellites. South Korea fears that this will increase the threat posed by North Korea's military nuclear program and its intention to attack and invade South Korea.


Russia's other interests that excludes North Korea


In a Significant Geopolitical development, Russia and North Korea are indulging in an alliance. However, Russia being a permanent member of the Security Council has previously supported the passing of resolutions aimed at addressing and condemning North Korea's nuclear ambitions. Russia and China both aim to hinder North Korea from enhancing its capabilities due to its costly and unpredictable nature as a partner.


Russia is also interested in preserving its strained relationship with South Korea, a significant trade partner that existed prior to the Ukraine invasion, instead of pushing it towards closer ties with the US leading to the advancement of the US-Japan-South Korea partnership.


Lastly, Russia is at a risk of violating the U.N. Security Council resolutions adopted in 2006 (Addressing and Condemning North Korea's missile launching and activities) by purchasing weapons and providing arms to North Korea.

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