North Korea and Russia Discuss Military Cooperation and Potential Arms Deals

North Korea and Russia Discuss Satellite Technology and Military Cooperation


A recent summit meeting between North Korean Chairman Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin at Russia’s Vostochny Cosmodrome has sparked discussions on satellite technology and military cooperation between the two nations. While no joint statement or agreement was signed during the meeting, analysts believe that talks on military cooperation have progressed significantly.

Satellite Technology Cooperation

During the summit, Chairman Kim expressed his interest in “strategic cooperation,” specifically highlighting the development of satellites. President Putin publicly pledged his support for North Korea’s satellite development, mentioning his willingness to engage in arms and technology trade with the country. President Putin had previously stated that Russia’s help was why the meeting took place at the Vostochny Cosmodrome, emphasizing Chairman Kim’s keen interest in rocket technology.

North Korea has encountered issues with its satellite launch program, particularly with the high-altitude engine in their launch vehicles. As a result, one option being explored is for Russia to provide the necessary equipment or conduct engine testing on North Korea’s behalf. North Korea plans to launch a reconnaissance satellite in October.

However, South Korea, the US, and other countries are keeping a close watch on these developments, as providing satellite technology to North Korea would violate UN Security Council sanctions. Nonetheless, experts argue that the peaceful nature of satellites complicates the matter, making strong international criticism less likely.

Military Cooperation and Arms Trade

Russia has expressed interest in receiving artillery shells and ammunition from North Korea as part of an arms trade deal. The Ukrainian conflict, which is expected to continue for an extended period, has depleted Russia’s stockpiles of these munitions. Such a trade, though, would contradict United Nations Security Council resolutions.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov avoided confirming discussions on the arms trade between the leaders, citing sensitive areas of cooperation that should remain undisclosed. However, Chairman Kim’s statement after the meeting, pledging to “join Russia in the fight against imperialism,” is being interpreted as support for Russia’s actions in Ukraine.

Despite potential sanctions imposed by the US and other countries, Russia has displayed an unwillingness to succumb to pressure. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov dismissed the relevance of current sanctions against North Korea, citing changes in geopolitical circumstances and denouncing promises of humanitarian support made by Western countries as false.

Economic Cooperation

Beyond military discussions, the summit also focused on economic cooperation. President Putin mentioned plans for projects related to transportation and logistics, including railways and roads. Additionally, Russia expressed support for agricultural development in North Korea, highlighting the need for food and energy in the country.

An ongoing project to expand transportation through the rail link between Khasan, Russia, and Rajin, North Hamgyong Province, North Korea has been discussed. This project, initiated in 2001, was suspended in 2013 due to North Korea’s nuclear tests and resulting sanctions.


The summit between North Korea and Russia has opened up dialogue on satellite technology, military cooperation, and economic ties. While the scope of cooperation and the response from South Korea and the United States remain uncertain, experts believe that the relationship between the two countries has strengthened significantly in the face of existing sanctions and strained international relations.

There is an urgent need to secure North Korea’s satellite launch vehicle technology.
Russia really needs artillery shells for the Ukraine War
There is also the possibility of talking about sending food and workers.

North Korean Chairman Kim Jong-un (second from right) and Russian President Vladimir Putin (first from right) listen to an explanation from officials about the rocket launch pad facilities at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia’s Amur Region on the 13th. The information board in front of you is written in Korean as well as Russian. Yonhap News Vostocini/Reuters

After North Korean Chairman Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin held a summit meeting at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia on the 13th, the two leaders did not sign any documents, such as a joint statement or agreement. However, analysis shows that talks on military cooperation have advanced significantly at this summit, with Chairman Kim emphasizing “strategic cooperation” and President Putin publicly stating that he will help North Korea develop satellites. On this day, President Putin expressed his willingness to engage in arms and technology trade with North Korea. Before the meeting, when Russian media asked President Putin if he would help North Korea develop a satellite, President Putin responded, “That’s why we came here (Vostochny Cosmodrome),” and added, “The Chairman Kim shows great interest in rocket technology. .”. “The North Korean delegation is trying to develop excellent programs,” he said. North Korea launched military reconnaissance satellites in May and August, but failed. In the launch last May, the launch vehicle carrying the ‘Great Mirror 1’ satellite failed due to problems with the second stage driver, and in the launch last August, there was an error in the emergency detonation system. North Korea hopes to take over the satellite launch experience and technology of space powerhouse Russia. Lee Chun-geun, an honorary research fellow at the Science and Technology Policy Institute, explained, “Currently, the North Korean satellite is having problems with the high-altitude engine in the launch vehicle, so there are several options, such as Russia in provide appropriate land. equipment or bring the engine directly to Russia for testing.” he did North Korea plans to launch a reconnaissance satellite again in October. South Korea and the US are keeping Russia and other countries in check as they break UN Security Council sanctions if they provide satellite technology to North Korea, but there is also analysis that sanctions can be avoided because they can be used satellites are peaceful by nature. Choi Yong-hwan, a senior research fellow at the National Security Strategy Institute, said, “Dual technologies such as satellites that can be used for both peaceful and military purposes are too ambiguous to be strongly criticized (by the international community). “It seems that North Korea and Russia will start talks on this issue in the future,” he said. Russia wants to receive conventional weapons, such as artillery shells and ammunition, from North Korea in exchange for satellite technology. This is because there is not enough stock of artillery shells to be used in the Ukraine war, which will last over a year and a half. This arms trade is against the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council. Regarding this, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov asked if the two leaders would discuss arms deals before the meeting, saying, “Of course, as neighboring countries, we cooperate in sensitive areas that should not be announced or u publish.” In addition, the fact that Chairman Kim said at a dinner with President Putin after the meeting that he would “join Russia in the fight against imperialism” is being interpreted as something that he will support war Russia in Ukraine. Chairman Kim also said, “I am extremely confident that the heroic Russian army and people will brilliantly inherit the tradition of victory and show infinitely valuable and honorable results on the two fronts of special military operations (Ukraine) and building a strong nation.” Furthermore, Chairman Kim said that he discussed the political situation on the Korean Peninsula and Europe with President Putin, and emphasized that his visit to Russia is “confident that it will be an important opportunity to transform North Korea-Russia relations into a strategic partnership that can be broken. .” This can be seen as suggesting a relationship between North Korea’s conventional weapons and Russia’s advanced military technology. The US has announced additional sanctions against North Korea and Russia if they trade artillery shells and satellite technology. However, Russia has shown an attitude of ignoring this pressure. Also on this day, the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, said on Russian TV, “Sanctions against North Korea were adopted in a completely different geopolitical situation (from now),” and that the promise of humanitarian support made by Western countries impose sanctions on the North. Korea turned out to be fake. . Kim Dong-yup, a professor at the University of North Korean Studies, said, “North Korea and Russia are under sanctions, relations between the US and Russia have deteriorated due to the war in Ukraine, and North Korea-US and inter-Korean relations . Both are bad, so UN sanctions won’t be a big problem.” “What is important is that North Korea-Russia relations have been greatly upgraded in this situation,” he stressed. It does not seem likely that Russia will immediately transfer nuclear submarine technology to North Korea. This is because military powers such as the United States and Russia do not give up key advanced security-related technologies, such as nuclear submarines, even to allies. Senior Research Fellow Choi Yong-hwan said, “The transfer of highly advanced technologies such as nuclear technology is a burden even for Russia, which has set nuclear non-proliferation as its core national interest.” He added, “The degree of North Korea-Russia cooperation will be developed in the future while looking at the response of South Korea and the United States.” “There must be intent.” However, there is a possibility that joint training between North Korea and Russia could also be on the agenda. “It is clear that we need to talk about issues of economic cooperation, issues of a humanitarian nature, and the regional situation,” said President Putin in his introductory remarks at the summit. Cooperation in the economic field is important even in North Korea, which is in difficult circumstances. Accordingly, the summit of the two countries also discussed cooperation in transport and agriculture, including food and energy needed by North Korea. TASS news agency reported that President Putin appeared on the Russia 1 channel after the meeting and said, “We are planning projects related to transport and logistics, railways, roads, etc.” and that “Russia also has support in relation to agricultural development. ” he did. Expanding transportation through the rail link project between Khasan, Russia and Rajin, North Hamgyong Province, North Korea is also being discussed This project began with an agreement between the leaders of North Korea and Russia in 2001, but has been suspended since 2013 due to North Korea’s nuclear tests and sanctions. Reporter Jang Ye-ji
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