North Korean leader Kim Jong Un offered his country’s “full support and solidarity” to Moscow in a message to Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday, state media reported.
Kim sent the message of congratulations on the national day of Russia, one of a handful of nations that maintain friendly relations with Pyongyang.
His message, published by the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), did not directly mention the invasion of Ukraine or Moscow’s involvement in an armed conflict, but praised Putin’s “correct decision and guidance… to foil the hostile forces’ escalating threats”.
The North Korean people, it added, extend “full support and solidarity to the Russian people in their all-out struggle for implementing the sacred cause to preserve the sovereign rights, development and interests of their country against the imperialists’ high-handed and arbitrary practices.”
This is the latest message of support from Pyongyang to Moscow since the beginning of the war in Ukraine.
North Korea has described that conflict as a US “proxy war” to destroy Russia, and condemned Western military aid to Kyiv.
In January, the United States accused North Korea of supplying rockets and missiles to the Russian mercenary group Wagner. Pyongyang denied that allegation.
And in March, Washington claimed to have proof that Moscow was looking to Pyongyang to supply weapons for its offensive in Ukraine, in return for food aid for impoverished North Korea.
As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, Russia has long held the line against increasing pressure on North Korea, which is under multiple UN and Western sanctions over its nuclear weapons and missile programmes.