Washington says: North Korea gets boost to its military with Russia cooperation:

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un shakes hands with Russia's Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu, as he visits Vladivostok, Russia, September 16, 2023 released by the Korean Central News Agency on September 17, 2023. KCNA via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THIS IMAGE. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. SOUTH KOREA OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SOUTH KOREA.

David Brunnstrom and Arshad Mohammed

WASHINGTON: The nature of the security threat posed by North Korea could change “drastically” in the coming decade as a result of its unprecedented cooperation with Russia, the White House’s senior director for arms control Pranay Vaddi said on Thursday.

he military sphere,” Vaddi told Washington’s Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank.

“And I say unprecedented very deliberately – We have never seen this before.”

Vaddi said it was necessary to pay close attention not just to nuclear-armed North Korea’s help for Russia war in Ukraine, primarily in the form of missile systems, but “what could be going in the other direction as well.”

“How could that improve North Korea’s capabilities? And what does that mean for our own extended deterrence posture in the region with both Korea and Japan?”

“I think the nature of North Korea as a threat in the region could drastically change over the coming decade as a result of this cooperation,” Vaddi said.

Vaddi said the United States would continue to work with South Korea to make sure their

combined “extended deterrence” was as credible as possible in the face of the evolving North Korea threat – a reference to the U.S. “nuclear umbrella” protecting allies.

Asked how much of a worry it was that such allies would pursue their own nuclear defense capabilities in the face of the growing North Korean threat, Vaddi said:

North Korea military parade: Kim Jong Un shows off ballistic missiles to  Russia, China delegation | Watch News Videos Online

“We want to make sure that the U.S. nuclear umbrella system as it has existed remains sufficient for deterring threats, including emerging threats that are emanating in Europe and Asia.”

Russia said on Wednesday it was developing its relations with North Korea in all areas, including “sensitive” ones after the North Korean foreign minister held rare talks in the Kremlin with President Vladimir Putin, who has been invited to visit the reclusive nuclear-armed country.

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