US Sanctions Russian Entities Over Purchase Of Ballistic Missiles From Kim Jong Un For Ukraine War

The U.S. State Department imposed sanctions on Thursday against three Russian entities and an individual in response to the transfer and testing of North Korean ballistic missiles by Russia against Ukraine.

What Happened: The sanctioned parties were involved in the transfer and testing of North Korean ballistic missiles for Russia’s use against Ukraine, reported Reuters.

This move by the U.S. comes shortly after a joint statement with its partners condemning arms transfers between Russia and North Korea, highlighting Russia’s acquisition and use of Kim Jong Un‘s ballistic missiles against Ukraine on Dec. 30 and Jan. 2.

Both Russia and North Korea have denied engaging in arms deals despite growing ties since the onset of the Ukraine conflict.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken emphasized the U.S.’s stance on the issue, stating, “We will not hesitate to take further actions.”

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He also pointed out that the transfer of ballistic missiles to Russia by North Korea supports Russia’s aggression, exacerbates the suffering of the Ukrainian people, and undermines global nonproliferation efforts.

Last week, the White House accused Russia of using short-range ballistic missiles (SRBMs) from North Korea to carry out multiple strikes on Ukraine, following newly declassified intelligence. This accusation was later corroborated by a senior Ukrainian official.

Why It Matters: The recent sanctions are part of the ongoing tension between the U.S., Russia, and North Korea. The U.S. and its partners have been critical of Russia’s alleged acquisition and use of North Korean missiles in the Ukrainian conflict. According to a recent report, Russia obtained ballistic missiles from Pyongyang and was in discussions to acquire close-range ballistic missiles from Iran. The missiles were reportedly to be used in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

This North Korean leader also recently toured munitions production facilities. Kim identified areas of concern in the production process, stressing the need for improvement and underlining the “strategic importance of the production of major weapons.”

Illustration by TPYXA_ILLUSTRATION on Shutterstock

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