Putin Signs ‘Breakthrough’ Mutual Defense Agreement With Kim Jong Un
In this pool photograph distributed by the Russian state agency Sputnik, Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) shakes hands with North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un (R) after a signing ceremony following their bilateral talks at Kumsusan state residence in Pyongyang, on June 19, 2024. (Photo by Kristina Kormilitsyna / POOL / AFP) / -- Editor's note : this image is distributed by the Russian state owned agency Sputnik

Russian President Vladimir Putin met with North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang, where, on Wednesday, the two dictators signed a mutual defense agreement.

Putin’s North Korea trip marks his first visit to the Hermit Kingdom in 24 years, and the Russian president was greeted with fanfare and crowds of North Koreans chanting his name, NBC News reported. Following his meeting with Kim, Putin said the leaders signed “a truly breakthrough document” that boosts security, trade, and humanitarian agreements. Kim called the agreement the “strongest ever treaty” between the two countries.

The Russian president said U.S. allies Japan and South Korea were “hostile to North Korea” and labeled U.S. policy toward Kim as “confrontational,” according to CNN. Biden administration officials have expressed concern that increased ties between Russia and North Korea will help boost Kim’s nuclear capabilities and help supply Putin’s forces with ammunition as it continues its assault on Ukraine.

Putin thanked Kim for continuing to support Russia in its “fight against the imperialist hegemonistic policies of the U.S. and its satellites against the Russian Federation.” Kim visited Putin in the Russian port city of Vladivostok last September to discuss weapons shipments to Russia.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Tuesday that Putin’s visit to North Korea shows the Russian leader is trying “in desperation, to develop and to strengthen relations with countries that can provide it with what it needs to continue the war of aggression that it started against Ukraine.”

Six senior U.S. officials told NBC News that the Biden administration believes Russia is sending North Korea ballistic missile technology in exchange for munitions the country is supplying to Russian troops. The U.S. said in February that North Korea has sent “10,000 containers of munitions or munitions-related materials to Russia” since the Kim-Putin meeting in September of 2023.


While details of the new agreement are still not fully known, the Russia-North Korea security treaty appears to be the strongest between the two countries since 1961, when the former Soviet Union promised to aid North Korea if it was attacked, the Associated Press reported. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia and North Korea agreed to a weaker security deal in 2000.

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