North Korea denied on Sunday that it is supplying weapons to Moscowafter the United States affirmed that that country supplies rockets and missiles to Wagner, a private Russian military group.
(Read: With heavy tanks, the West seeks to break Russian fortifications)
Washington earlier this month designated the Wagner group a “transnational criminal organization,” citing its arms deals with Pyongyang that violate UN Security Council resolutions.
The White House showed US intelligence photos of railcars entering North Korea, picking up a shipment of infantry rockets and missiles, and returning to Russia, according to national security spokesman John Kirby.
In a statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency, a senior North Korean official denied the allegations, warning that the United States will face a “really undesirable outcome” if it persists in spreading what it called “fabricated rumours.”
“Trying to tarnish (North Korea’s) image by making something that doesn’t exist is a serious provocation that can never be allowed and can only provoke a reaction,” said Kwon Jong Gun, director general of the US Department of Affairs.
Along with China, Russia is one of North Korea’s few international allies.
Apart from Syria and Russia, North Korea is the only country that has recognized the independence of the breakaway regions of Lugansk and Donetskbacked by Russia in eastern Ukraine.
Russia, one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, has long stood up against increasing pressure on nuclear-weapon North Korea, even calling for easing international sanctions against it for reasons humanitarian.
In September, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un declared his country an “irreversible” nuclear state, and conducted weapons tests in violation of resolutions for nearly every month of the past year, including launching its most advanced intercontinental ballistic missile.
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