Seoul claims Pyongyang has sent almost 5 million artillery shells to Russia — Novaya Gazeta Europe
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Seoul claims Pyongyang has sent almost 5 million artillery shells to Russia

Vladimir Putin meets Kim Jong-un in September. Photo: EPA-EFE/VLADIMIR SMIRNOV/SPUTNIK/KREMLIN POOL

Vladimir Putin meets Kim Jong-un in September. Photo: EPA-EFE/VLADIMIR SMIRNOV/SPUTNIK/KREMLIN POOL

Seoul has detected at least 10,000 shipping containers being sent from North Korea to Russia, potentially holding up to 4.8 million artillery shells, South Korean Defence Minister Shin Won-sik told Bloomberg News in an interview published Friday.

He also said that North Korea had sent dozens of ballistic missiles to Russia.

In return, Russia had sent North Korea technology to help it deploy spy satellites and conventional arms such as tanks and aircraft, Shin said. Vladimir Putin would likely seek to obtain even more military supplies during his upcoming visit to Pyongyang, Shin continued.

Russian business daily Vedomosti reported Monday that Putin would make state visits to North Korea and Vietnam later this month. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov first mentioned plans for Putin’s visit to North Korea in May, saying the details would be announced “in good time”. In September, North Korea’s dictator Kim Jong-un invited Putin to visit the country while on an official visit of his own to Russia.

Last month, NBC also reported that Putin would visit North Korea in the coming weeks. It said talks would focus on Putin providing North Korea with nuclear submarine and ballistic missile technology in exchange for Pyongyang sending Russia large amounts of munitions.

Putin last visited North Korea in 2000, meeting Kim Jong-un’s father, Kim Jong-il, in Pyongyang.

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