North Korea Supplies Artillery to Russia

( – On October 3, the United States Central Command issued a press release stating the US sent 1.1 million 7.62mm munition rounds to support the Ukrainian war effort. The command said naval forces seized the ammunition in transfer from the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to members of Yemen’s predominately Zaidi Shia group Houthis — a clear violation of the UN Security Council Resolution 2216. But the US isn’t the only one helping the war efforts, and the assistance isn’t all going toward Ukraine.

On October 5, CBS News reported that a US official revealed North Korea started giving Russian forces artillery to help them in the war. Few details were included with the information, including what North Korea is receiving in return for its assistance and if this supply is limited or the start of something more long-term.

According to reports, North Korean President Kim Jong Un recently met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow last month. During that meeting, Kim reportedly committed his country’s support to Russia in its “sacred fight” against Ukraine. There was speculation that the North Korean leader would ask Putin for food, cash, weapons, and space technology in return. Whether that happened or not is unclear.

The recent instance isn’t the first time there has been talk about North Korea supplying Russia with munitions. In November 2022, The New York Times reported that the US accused the Asian nation of secretly sending artillery shells to Moscow in support of its attack on Ukraine. Although White House National Security spokesman John Kirby said that the alleged transfer wouldn’t likely change the war, it does show the apparent relationship and their willingness to sneak support to each other through different countries in order to avoid detection.

In September, North Korea denied such a transfer occurred, and the country had no plans to send Russia any weapons or ammunition.

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