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Russia protects North Korea in the UN with veto of resolution to investigate sanction violations

United Nations CNN —

Russia on Thursday vetoed a United Nations resolution that would renew an independent panel of experts investigating North Korea’s violations of Security Council sanctions, at a time when Pyongyang has become a key supplier of munitions for Moscow’s war against Ukraine.

In recent years, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has overseen a massive buildup in Pyongyang’s ballistic missile program, with dozens of tests in a year, including long-range intercontinental ballistic missiles that could in theory reach the United States mainland.

International sanctions and UN investigations into North Korea’s illegal weapons program have previously been backed by Russia. But relations between Moscow and the West are at a historic low over the war unleashed on Ukraine. Facing increased international ostracism – and acute ammunition shortages – Russian President Vladimir Putin has grown more reliant on North Korean counterpart Kim Jong Un.

North Korea has also gained a powerful backer at the UN which wields veto power.

Russian Ambassador to the UN Vassily Nebenzia told the Security Council the UN-imposed sanctions regime on Pyongyang, aimed at stopping North Korea from conducting nuclear tests or launching ballistic missiles, is “losing its relevance” and is “detached from reality,” according to a UN press release.

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