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Former US intel officer says Russia-DPRK partnership treaty surprised US

Scott Ritter said the US lost a chance to prevent Russia and North Korea from getting closer

WASHINGTON, June 25. /TASS/. Scott Ritter, who formerly served as a US intelligence officer and a UN inspector, said the recent strategic partnership treaty between Russia and North Korea took the US by surprise.

"North Korea is now strategically aligned with Russia," he said on a podcast called Judging Freedom, which is hosted by Andrew Napolitano. "They [the US] have no idea how to respond. They were not expecting this."

According to Ritter, the US anticipated that Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to North Korea would achieve only "some sort of limited ammunition deal." However, the Russian president changed "the entire geopolitical balance of the Pacific," the American said.

Ritter said the US lost a chance to prevent Russia and North Korea from getting closer.

"The irony here is that it could have been an American president being driven down the streets of Pyongyang. Donald Trump tried to achieve an outcome that would <...> not allow Russia this wonderful geopolitical strategic opportunity. But Donald Trump failed," the American said. "Joe Biden refused to pick up that pattern."

Putin paid a state visit to Pyongyang from June 18-19. Following his talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the countries concluded the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Treaty. It provides for mutual military assistance in the event of aggression against one of the sides, as well as the development of a system of joint measures to strengthen defense capabilities. The two countries also agreed to jointly respond to strategic threats in such areas as food and energy security, security in the area of information and communication technologies, climate change, healthcare and supply chains.