Seoul Reports Russian Use of North Korean Missiles in Ukraine, Raises Alarm at U.N. Session

Seoul: During a recent U.N. Security Council session, Seoul's top envoy expressed grave concerns over Russia's use of North Korean ballistic missiles in Ukraine, highlighting the potential for Pyongyang to gain critical military insights and possibly boost its arms exports. The session focused on maintaining peace in Ukraine, where numerous council members, including Seoul, condemned the arms transfers between North Korea and Russia as a clear violation of multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the White House disclosed that North Korea had supplied Moscow with several dozen ballistic missiles. Some of these missiles were employed in attacks on Ukrainian targets on specific dates, including Dec. 30, Jan. 2, and a recent Saturday. Hwang emphasized the technical and military knowledge North Korea could acquire from these launches, potentially leading to increased exports of ballistic missiles and further funding of its illicit nuclear and ballistic missile programs. He referred to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), North Korea's official name, in his statement.

Hwang also accused North Korea of utilizing Ukraine as a testing ground for its nuclear-capable missiles, ignoring Ukraine's territorial integrity and the safety of its people. He cited experts who identified the missiles as KN-23, capable of carrying nuclear warheads. He expressed South Korea's concern, officially the Republic of Korea (ROK), emphasizing the direct threat these developments pose to his country.

Further insights were provided during the session, highlighting the range of one of the missiles and its implications for South Korean security. Hwang urged all U.N. Security Council members to take significant action to restrain North Korea's nuclear ambitions and provocations. He criticized the council's lack of action, suggesting it only strengthens Pyongyang's regime.

Additionally, Robert Wood, the deputy U.S. ambassador to the U.N., addressed the arms trade between North Korea and Russia. He accused Russian forces of using DPRK ballistic missiles in Ukraine multiple times and anticipated further missile usage against Ukrainian infrastructure and civilians. Wood criticized Russia for diverting attention from its and North Korea's violations of U.N. Security Council resolutions.

In response, Russian Ambassador to the U.N., Vasily Nebenzya, dismissed these allegations as incorrect, citing statements from John Kirby, the official White House representative, and a representative of the Ukrainian air force. Nebenzya claimed that the U.S. is disseminating misinformation without adequate verification.

Geng Shuang, China's deputy representative to the U.N., called for calm and restraint over the Ukraine conflict, emphasizing the absence of winners in war and conflict. He encouraged all parties to seek political solutions and support de-escalation.

Before the council meeting, a joint statement issued by eight countries, including South Korea, the U.S., and Japan, condemned Russia's procurement and use of weapons from North Korea, stating that such violations increase global danger and exploit Russia's Security Council position.

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