"It allowed Russia to exhale a little": Budanov explained how DPRK helps the Kremlin with ammunition
In the war against Ukraine, Russia is spending more weapons and ammunition than it is capable of producing, so Moscow has been forced to look for additional sources of replenishment. The largest supplier of weapons to Russia is currently the DPRK.
This was stated by Kyrylo Budanov, Chief of the Defence Intelligence of Ukraine, in an interview with the Financial Times. He noted that North Korea's assistance allowed Russia to "exhale a little."
According to Budanov, the Russian defense industry is not able to replenish the stocks of weapons and ammunition Russia needs for the war against Ukraine: the occupiers use more than Russia is able to produce at the front. At the same time, Russia has problems with quality control
"This explains why Russia is looking for weapons in other countries," he emphasized.
North Korea is currently providing the most weapons and ammunition to the aggressor state. In fact, Pyongyang has helped Moscow avoid a catastrophe, Budanov believes.
"They did transfer a significant amount of artillery ammunition. This allowed Russia to exhale a little bit. Without the DPRK's help, the situation would have been catastrophic," the Ukrainian intelligence chief said.
At the same time, Budanov emphasized, Russia would not want to depend on outside help, because, according to him, "it has always been considered a humiliation."
In addition to the lack of weapons, the DIU chief added, Russia is also facing a shortage of manpower: the Russian army is losing more soldiers at the front than Russia is able to recruit.
On January 4, White House National Security Council Coordinator John Kirby said during a briefing that Russia had received ballistic missiles from North Korea in violation of international sanctions. Moreover, he said that it is already using them in the war with Ukraine.
According to the United States, these are "launchers and several dozen missiles."
Later, the White House announced all cases of North Korean ballistic missiles being used by the occupiers against Ukraine. During the attack on December 30, it is known for certain that one missile was launched from the DPRK. On January 2, the occupiers fired about 10 missiles at Zaporizhzhia, Kyiv, Kharkiv, and other cities. The invaders also launched missiles from North Korea on January 6, but the White House did not specify how many of them were used.
On January 11, the Office of the Prosecutor General confirmed that Russian troops had fired missiles from the DPRK atUkraine. Prosecutor General Andrii Kostin announced the first evidence of this fact.
The next day, the DIU specified what kind of weapons Russia supplies to the DPRK. These are artillery shells, ammunition, shells for multiple launch rocket systems, and mines.