The powerful sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has denounced the US plan to arm Ukraine with cutting-edge battle tanks to aid in the fight against Russian forces, accusing Washington of crossing a “red line” and waging a “proxy war” intended to topple Moscow.
Kim Yo Jong’s remarks on Friday highlighted North Korea’s growing allegiance to Russia about the conflict in Ukraine, as well as its confrontation with the US and its Asian allies over its own expanding nuclear weapons and missile program.
“I express serious concern over the US escalating the war situation by providing Ukraine with military hardware for a ground offensive,” Kim Yo Jong said in a statement, her first public remarks in months.
“The US is the arch-criminal which poses a serious threat and challenge to the strategic security of Russia and pushes the regional situation to the present grave phase,” said Kim, who is vice-department director of the Central Committee of the Workers Party of Korea.
“I do not doubt that any military hardware the US and the West boast of will be burnt into pieces in the face of the indomitable fighting spirit and might of the heroic Russian army and people,” she said, adding that North Korea will always “stand in the same trench” with Russia.
Kim made his remarks after the US announced that it will send 31 M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, ending months of uncertainty on Washington’s part. The announcement was broadcast by the nation’s official Korean Central News Agency. Following Germany’s decision to lend Ukraine 14 Leopard 2 A6 tanks from its own stockpiles, the US made its declaration.
By sending its major tanks to Ukraine, US President Joe Biden’s administration, according to Kim, was “further crossing the red line” and demonstrating a “sinister desire to fulfill its hegemonic purpose by further expanding the proxy war for destroying Russia.”
According to North Korea, the US is responsible for the Ukrainian conflict because of the West’s “hegemonic strategy,” which compelled Russia to use armed force to defend its security interests.
In addition, Donetsk and Luhansk, two separatist territories in eastern Ukraine supported by Russia, are the only countries outside of Russia and Syria to recognize their independence. North Korea has also made suggestions that it may send personnel to assist in the region’s reconstruction.
Despite North Korea’s repeated denials, the US has accused North Korea of shipping massive quantities of artillery shells and other ammunition to Russia to help its war in Ukraine.
Additionally, Pyongyang has sped up the development of its arsenal, test-firing more than 70 missiles in 2022 alone, including intercontinental ballistic missiles that might be equipped with nuclear warheads.