According to state media KCNA, Kim Yo Jong, the influential sister of North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un, has accused Ukraine of advocating for nuclear weapons. Kim based her claims on an online petition in Ukraine with under 1,000 signatures that calls for Ukraine to either host nuclear weapons on its own territory or be armed with its own nuclear weapons. However, Kim did not provide any evidence for her assertion that the petition could be a political scheme by President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s office.
This petition was filed after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced his plans to station tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus. The petition had only gained 611 signatures by Saturday afternoon, which is far below the 25,000 signatures required for a response from Zelenskiy. So far, Kyiv officials have not commented on the petition.
North Korea has been building closer ties with the Kremlin due to shared isolation by the West. It supported Moscow’s stance after Russia invaded Ukraine last year, which included the proclaimed annexation of parts of Ukraine that most U.N. members deemed illegal. North Korea has refuted allegations of providing arms to Moscow.