The U.N. states are concerned about China and Russia helping North Korea. The United Nations member nations upholding the Korean War armistice are worried that China and Russia are assisting North Korea in enhancing its military capabilities by allowing Pyongyang to avoid sanctions, according to U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Tuesday.
Austin was addressing a gathering of defense ministers and officials from the 17 nations that comprise the U.N. Command (UNC), which is in charge of policing the armistice in South Korea.
Declaring the People’s Republic of China and North Korea’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, “we are deeply concerned that the PRC and Russia are helping the DPRK expand its capabilities by enabling it to evade sanctions from the U.N. Security Council,” Austin stated.
He added, “We’re also concerned about the recent growth in military cooperation between Russia and the DPRK.” Moscow is allegedly giving North Korea technical military support, while Washington has charged North Korea with transferring military hardware to Russia for use in its conflict with Ukraine.
Although their leaders promised more military cooperation when they met in September in the far east of Russia, North Korea, and Russia have denied ever having made any arms agreements.
The closest ally of North Korea, China, has said it abides by its international duties. According to South Korea’s defense ministry, the UNC is anticipated to reaffirm its commitment to oppose any attack by North Korea and to approve a unified declaration outlining a coordinated response in the case of a “contingency” on the Korean peninsula on Tuesday.
Defense Minister Shin Won-sik stated that Pyongyang had received warnings not to try aggressive actions, pointing out that North Korea is currently a member of the U.N., in contrast to 1950, when the Korean War started.
“If North Korea ever invades the South again, it will be self-contradictory, where a U.N. member state would be attacking the U.N. Command,” Shin stated during the discussion. “If the countries that backed North Korea during the Korean War ever try to help again, then those countries will also receive grave punishment from the international community, along with North Korea.”
When the North faced off against the United States-led coalition of U.N. members, support came from China and the Soviet Union. The parties to the truce with the UNC are China and North Korea.
During the 1950–1953 Korean War, the 17 UNC members—which include the U.S., U.K., Australia, and Turkey—sent soldiers or provided medical assistance.
When the UNC was founded in 1950, its mission was to maintain the ceasefire, bring about peace, and serve as a liaison with North Korea.
The American military commander stationed in South Korea is in charge of it. On Monday, North Korea described the UNC as “a U.S. tool for confrontation” that is unrelated to the U.N. and an “illegal war organization” that has to be disbanded to stop a new conflict from breaking out on the Korean Peninsula.
Austin and Shin decided to amend their bilateral security pact on Monday to counter North Korea’s increasing nuclear and missile threats. The heads of defense also chose to work with Japan to enhance joint exercises and prevent future North Korean attacks.