Vice President Kamala Harris said Sunday North Korean Kim Jong Un’s potential meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin would be a “huge mistake.”
When asked about the meeting by CBS “Face the Nation” anchor Margaret Brennan, Harris said, “I think it would be a huge mistake.”
“First of all, when you look at Russia’s unprovoked war on Ukraine, and the idea that they would supply ammunition to Russia, well, it’s predictable where that ends up,” Harris continued. “I also believe very strongly that for both Russia and North Korea, this will further isolate them.”
A U.S. official said last week Kim expects to make a visit to Russia to meet with Putin within the month.
“We are all absolutely clear and unequivocal about our goal of the complete denuclearization of North Korea,” Harris said. “But when we think about the- Russia’s aggression in Ukraine … It’s an absolute violation of one of the most important agreements that we have around the world in terms of international rules and norms, which is the importance of sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
Harris called the meeting “an act of desperation” for Russia while a huge mistake on North Korea’s part.
A U.S. official told The Associated Press the U.S. isn’t sure exactly where or when the meeting would take place, but the Pacific port city of Vladivostok could be likely due to its relative proximity to North Korea.
Both Kim and Putin are scheduled to attend the Eastern Economic Forum at the Far Eastern Federal University in Vladivostok, which runs Sept. 10-13, though it is not immediately clear if this is when the leaders will meet.
U.S. officials said Russia is looking to buy ammunition from North Korea to refill reserves drained by its war in Ukraine, according to The AP. In exchange, North Korea would likely want food and energy shipments and transfers of sophisticated weapons technologies.
U.S. officials have suspected over the past year North Korea is providing Russia with a variety of ammunition, and would likely fuel ongoing U.S. concerns of a deepening cooperation between the two countries.
The meeting would mark Kim’s first summit with a foreign leader since North Korea closed its borders in January 2020.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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