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Report on Ukraine Military Supplies to DPRK 'Does Not Suggest Kiev Involvement'

Sputnik News

21:05 14.08.2017(updated 21:08 14.08.2017)

The report claiming that North Korea acquired military technology from Ukraine does not suggest that the government in Kiev or KB Yuzhnoye executives were involved, a representative from the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) press office told Sputnik on Monday.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – Earlier in the day, the IISS released a report alleging that North Korea's successes in testing an intercontinental ballistic missile may be attributed to purchases of military supplies including rocket engines from Ukraine.

"This is not to suggest that the Ukrainian government was involved, and not necessarily Yuzhnoye executives," the IISS representative said.

The report argues for the source of the RD-250 engine, the representative added, and does not identify specific individuals or organisations linked to how it came into North Korea's possession.

Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council Secretary denied the report. Ukraine's Yuzhmash aerospace equipment manufacturer, in its turn, said in a statement that the organization had nothing to do with North Korea's space or defense-related missile programs.

The NYT cited a study by Michael Elleman, a senior fellow for missile defense with the International Institute for Strategic Studies think tank, published earlier in the day, which suggested that North Korea is unlikely to have designed and manufactured the engines for its newest missiles Hwasong-12 and Hwasong-14, since the country has no track record in developing similar engines. The study suggested that Pyongyang must have acquired high-performance liquid-propellant engine (LPE) from abroad.

The IISS report said that the engine did not physically resemble any LPE manufactured in China, France, India, Iran, Japan or the United States, which left the former Soviet Union states as the most likely source. The study concluded that the expertise necessary for building the engines, identified as modified RD-250, was "available at Russia's Energomash concern and Ukraine's KB [State Design Office] Yuzhnoye." The missiles used by North Korea could reportedly be designed in Yuzhnoye and produced by Yuzhmash manufacturer.

According to the report, North Korean operatives were known to be seeking missiles in Ukraine. The study cited the example of two North Korean nationals arrested and convicted in Ukraine in 2012 for attempts to acquire missile hardware developed by Yuzhnoye.


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