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Putin and Kim’s New Pact Raises Eyebrows: What the Russia-North Korea Agreement Really Means

Daniel Kim Views  

Newsis

Regarding the comprehensive strategic partnership agreement signed on the 19th at the summit between Russia and North Korea, which includes strengthening military cooperation, the South Korean government clarified that it is not an automatic military intervention but an anticipated outcome.

The agreement, signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un following their summit in Pyongyang, states that mutual support will be provided if one of the treaty parties is attacked.

In response, a South Korean senior government official commented in a call with this newspaper, “The agreement does not entail automatic military intervention. The chance of Russia and North Korea being attacked is nearly zero.”

Another high-ranking official criticized the agreement from the Russia-North Korea summit as vague, stating, “Since no one will attack them, what is the point of pledging mutual assistance? It’s empty promises.”

Previously, Jang Ho Jin, head of the National Security Office, had warned Russia on the 16th not to cross a certain line ahead of the Russia-North Korea summit.

This warning was issued based on intelligence suggesting that the two sides might sign a treaty close to automatic military intervention in case of a crisis during the summit.

While our government might announce an official position after analyzing the agreement’s text between the Russian and North Korean leaders, it may refrain from taking a stance due to the ambiguous nature of the agreement’s content.

The 1961 Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance explicitly specified automatic military intervention in similar situations. However, the treaty was abolished in 1996 after establishing diplomatic relations between Korea and Russia.

The current agreement uses the term mutual support in a similar situation, and our government is reportedly deliberating on how to respond.

However, since mutual support is a vague term rather than a specific commitment like military intervention, some argue that a strong response from our government may not be necessary.

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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