“Given that Kim and Putin discussed some military exchanges and cooperation at their recent summit, the dramatic increase in rail traffic likely indicates North Korea’s supply of arms and munitions to Russia,” Beyond Parallel, a website run by the Washington-based Centre for Strategic and International Studies think tank, said in a report on Friday.
“However, the extensive use of tarps to cover the shipping crates/containers and equipment makes it impossible to conclusively identify what is seen at the Tumangang Rail Facility” on the border, it said.
The report said satellite images as of October 5 captured “a dramatic and unprecedented level of freight railcar traffic” at the Tumangang Rail Facility. It said images show around 73 carriages while a review of previous satellite images over the past five years shows about 20 carriages at this facility at most.
Since last year, the US has accused North Korea of providing ammunition, artillery shells and rockets to Russia, likely many of them copies of Soviet-era munitions. South Korean officials said North Korean weapons provided to Russia had already been used in Ukraine.
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