Russia's 'Shopping List' Includes Obsolete Arms from N.Korea

  • By Kim Myong-song

    August 16, 2023 13:55

    Russia's arms shopping list for its war in Ukraine includes outmoded weapons that are more than 70 years old from North Korea, Radio Free Asia said Tuesday. 
    It said Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, who visited Pyongyang last month, carried a shopping list that was leaked to Gulagu, a Russian human rights group. 
    According to the list, Russia requested from the North PPSh-41 submachine guns that were used in the Korean War, RPD Degtyaryov light machine guns, Chinese Type-56 rifles, and ammunition. 
    North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (right) visits an arms exhibition with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in Pyongyang in July. /Newsis
    Russia produced the PPSH-41 from 1941 until 1950 but the North carried on making it under the name "Type 49." The obsolete rifle is apparently still used by North Korea's Worker-Peasant Red Guards, a kind of civil defense force.   
    Russia also asked for a large quantity of tank shells used by the North's main tanks, such as the Chonma-ho and T-55 tanks. North Korea's obsolete weapons, ammunition and tank shells are compatible with Russian weapons and ammo because they were produced with technology and equipment from the old Soviet Union. 
    A PPSh-41 submachine gun factory pictured during the Korean War in 1951, in this grab from [North] Korean Central Television
    Also included in the shopping list are 170-mm "Juche" artillery guns which have been produced since the 1970s. They have a range of 30 km with a normal shell and an extended range of up to 60 km if it fires an extended-range shell. 
    Cho Han-bum of the Korea Institute for National Unification said, "Russia's arms shopping list seems to consist chiefly of old-fashioned weapons that can be secured immediately, which shows you how desperate Russia's situation is right now."  
    • Copyright © Chosunilbo &
    Previous Next
    All Headlines Back to Top