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NEWS | Oct. 26, 2023

U.S.-Japan-ROK Joint Statement Condemning DPRK-Russia Arms Transfers

U.S. Department of State

The text of the following statement was released by U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, Japanese Foreign Minister Kamikawa Yoko, and Republic of Korea Foreign Minister Park Jin.

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The United States, Japan, and the Republic of Korea (ROK) strongly condemn the provision of military equipment and munitions by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) to the Russian Federation for use against the government and people of Ukraine.  Such weapons deliveries, several of which we now confirm have been completed, will significantly increase the human toll of Russia’s war of aggression.  We will continue to work together with the international community to expose Russia’s attempts to acquire military equipment from the DPRK.  In the face of Russia’s attempt to prolong the war with assistance from the DPRK, we remain resolved to support Ukraine’s sovereignty and its efforts to counter the effects of Russia’s war of aggression.

In return for its support to Russia, the DPRK is seeking military assistance to advance its own military capabilities. We are monitoring closely for any materials that Russia provides to the DPRK in support of Pyongyang’s military objectives. We emphasize that arms transfers to or from the DPRK – as well as the transfer to the DPRK of certain items and technical cooperation related to the DPRK’s weapons of mass destruction, ballistic missile, or conventional weapons programs, – would violate multiple UN Security Council resolutions.  Russia itself voted for the UN Security Council resolutions that contain these restrictions. 

In addition, we are deeply concerned about the potential for any transfer of nuclear- or ballistic missile-related technology to the DPRK.  Such transfers would jeopardize the ongoing efforts of the international community to keep sensitive technologies out of the hands of actors who are working to destabilize regional security, threaten peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula as well as across the globe, and necessitate renewed efforts to respond appropriately across all elements of our national power to the advancing DPRK WMD threat.

The United States, Japan, and the ROK stand together, resolute in our opposition to arms transfers and related military cooperation between the DPRK and Russia and the deleterious effect such actions have on global security and nonproliferation.  We urge the DPRK and Russia to abide by relevant UN Security Council resolutions and immediately cease all activities that violate them.

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