Putin in North Korea: – It doesn't seem good just sitting at home

Putin in North Korea: – It doesn't seem good just sitting at home

On Tuesday evening, Norwegian time, Russian President Vladimir Putin was in North Korea to meet with Kim Jong Un.

Tor Bokvoll of the Norwegian Defense Research Institute has published a number of studies on Russian and Ukrainian defense and security policy.  Photo: Norwegian Defense Research Institute

Tor Bokvoll of the Norwegian Defense Research Institute has published a number of studies on Russian and Ukrainian defense and security policy. Photo: Norwegian Defense Research Institute

Speaking to ABC Nyheter, senior researcher at the Norwegian Defense Research Institute (FFI), Tor Bokvoll, says he believes the reason behind Putin's visit to the dictator in Pyongyang is primarily to underscore Russia's status as a great power.

-The leader of a major power has to travel from time to time. It doesn't feel good sitting at home. So you don't look like a superpower.

He points out that Putin has issued an arrest warrant for the president by the International Criminal Court, so the travel options available to Russia's strongman are limited.

– At the same time, you can ask questions about the signals you send by visiting North Korea. The country doesn't exactly have the best reputation.

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It has sent ammunition to Putin's war machine

Since Russia launched a full-scale war against Ukraine in February 2022, North Korea has reportedly, among other things, contributed artillery ammunition to the Russian war machine.

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Do you think North Korea will demand something in return?

– Of course, they might want something in return. Russia has some military technology that North Korea may need.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday that the alliance is concerned about possible Russian support for North Korea's missile and nuclear programme.

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This came during a press conference held by Stoltenberg with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken in Washington.

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According to NTB, Russia and North Korea are expected to sign a treaty on expanded cooperation between the two countries.

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– Nothing in particular to fear

– Does the West have anything to fear regarding Putin's visit to North Korea? Will there be a new and stronger alliance?

No, the West has nothing to particularly fear when it comes to an alliance between the two. It is primarily the alliance between Russia and China that worries Western countries.

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On Wednesday morning, Norwegian time, Putin thanked North Korea and Kim Jong Un for the support Russia has recently received.

Putin said: – We really appreciate your systematic and constant support for Russian policy, including the Ukraine issue.

According to the Russian state-run news agency RIA, Putin stressed during the meeting with Kim that Russia is fighting US imperialism, the United States and its allies.

Jabori Obasanjo

Jabori Obasanjo

"Coffee trailblazer. Certified pop culture lover. Infuriatingly humble gamer."

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