World news

Wagner armed by North Korea: the warning of the United States

The White House delivered a serious warning Thursday, December 22 against the rise of the paramilitary group Wagner, “rival power” of the Russian regular army in Ukraine. The latter, led by the ambitious Evgueni Prigojine, reputed to be close to Vladimir Putin, now receives weapons from North Korea according to the Americans. “North Korea made a first delivery to Wagner, who paid for this equipment. Last month, (it) delivered shells and missiles to Russia intended for Wagner”, explained John Kirby, spokesman for the National Security Council of the United States Executive.

Beginning of September already, the New York Times revealed thanks to recently declassified US documents that Russia was buying millions of artillery shells and rockets from North Korea. A sign, for the newspaper, that global sanctions have severely limited Russian supply chains and forced Moscow to turn to pariah states for its military supplies. For its part, the Kim Jong-un regime blamed the United States for the conflict and accused the West of pursuing a “hegemonic policy” which justifies the use of force by Russia in Ukraine.

Last month, North Korea even recognized the independence of Russia’s two small proxy states in eastern Ukraine – the people’s republics of Donetsk and Luhansk – and promised to deepen its “brotherly friendship ” with Moscow. Russian President Vladimir Putin said the two countries would develop their “comprehensive and constructive bilateral relations”, according to state media in Pyongyang.

50,000 troops deployed in Ukraine

Given Wagner’s proximity to the Kremlin, it is therefore not surprising to learn that these mercenaries are receiving weapons from North Korea. In an interview with reporters, the spokesman for the US executive’s National Security Council pointed out that Pyongyang was even considering “delivering more equipment”. According to his information, at present, Wagner has 50,000 troops deployed in Ukraine, including 10,000 mercenaries and 40,000 recruited from Russian prisons.

Washington, which has already taken sanctions against this organization present in several theaters of conflict in the world, will take additional measures “in the coming weeks”, indicated John Kirby, assuring that the influence in the Kremlin of Yevgueni Prigojine was in “increasing”. “For months, the Russian army has been counting on Wagner to lead the fight in certain areas of Donbass (eastern Ukraine) and in some cases, Russian officers are actually subject to Wagner’s orders,” he said. he says.

According to him, Wagner’s forces “poorly equipped and badly trained”, suffered “heavy losses” on the battlefield. Evgueni Prigojine, who has “no consideration for human life”, “sends Russian men to the butcher’s shop in Bakhmout”, a town on the front where fighting is raging, underlined John Kirby. “He seems to be much more interested in his influence in the Kremlin than in the men he recruits to fight in Ukraine. All that matters to him is to look good to (Russian President Vladimir) Putin.”

US officials believe the delivery of North Korean weapons is a direct violation of UN Security Council resolutions and plan to raise the issue with the UN body.

Source : BBN NEWS

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