Russia’s Vladimir Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un pose for the cameras, Pyongyang, June 19, 2024

Ukraine: How “Peace Talks” in 2022 Failed to Halt Russia’s Invasion

Wednesday’s Coverage: Putin’s Appeal to North Korea for Weapons

Map: Institute for the Study of War


A single Ukrainian naval drone destroyed or damaged four Russian patrol boats in an operation last month, says Ukraine’s military intelligence service HUR.

The service initially said two speedboats were hit on May 30 in Vuzka Bay on Russian-occupied Crimea’s western coast.

HUR spokesperson Andrii Yusov said, “We’ve seen in the last few operations where the enemy has planned everything out and did it right, the Magura [drone] breaks through these sea fortifications and fire barriers, and then the next drone goes straight to the target. As we saw when four Tuna speed boats were hit at once, aviation, artillery, small arms – none of it worked.”


Romania is sending a US-made Patriot air defense system to Ukraine.

The Supreme Council of National Defense said it was donating the system in view of the “deteriorating security situation” and “the regional consequences of this situation, including for Romania’s security” because of Russia’s attacks.

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has asked for 7 Patriots to bolster air defense against Russia’s daily missile and drone strikes. Since then, the US and Germany have pledged additional systems.


Four civilians have been killed and four wounded by Russian attacks on the northern part of the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine.

A guided aerial bomb killed one person and injured another when it destroyed one house and damaged three more in the town of Kostiantynivka.

Three civilians were slain and three wounded, including a teenager, by cluster munitions fired on the village of Rozkishne.

In the Kherson region in southern Ukraine, a 43-year-old man has killed in a strike on a car.


The office of South Korea’s President Yoon Suk Yeol says it will consider supplying military aid to Ukraine, following the Russia-North Korea mutual defense pact.

Seoul has limited itself to humanitarian and financial aid and non-lethal supplies during the Russian invasion.

The office said in a statement:

It’s absurd that two parties with a history of launching wars of invasion — the Korean War and the war in Ukraine — are now vowing mutual military cooperation on the premise of a preemptive attack by the international community that will never happen.

In particular, Russia’s decision to support North Korea and cause harm to our security, despite its status as a permanent member of the Security Council that has endorsed the sanctions resolution against North Korea, will inevitably have a negative impact on [South Korea-Russia] relations.


European Union Ambassadors have agreed a 14th package of sanctions against Russia over the invasion of Ukraine.

The measures include a ban on transshipment of Russian liquefied natural gas. EU operators will be liable for violations of sanctions by their subsidiaries and partners in third countries.

The Belgian Presidency said the package “provides new targeted measures and maximizes the impact of existing sanctions by closing loopholes”.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen tweeted:


Two civilians were killed and four wounded by Russian shelling of the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine on Wednesday.

The fatalities were in Toretsk and Rozkishne.


Two Russian oil depots have been set afire in Ukraine’s latest drone attacks.

The depots are in the Adygea Republic in southwest Russia and the Tambov region in the west.

Murat Kumpilov, head of Adygea, said the fire covered around 400 square meters and was extinguished at 6 a.m.


Early-morning Russian missile and drone attacks have damaged energy infrastructure in the Vinnytsia, Kyiv, Dnipropetrovsk, and Donetsk regions.

The Russians used nine missiles and 27 Iran-type attack drones. Five of the missiles and all of the UAVs were downed.

DTEK, Ukraine’s largest private energy company’s, said one of its thermal power plants suffered “severe” damage to equipment. Three engineers were wounded.

Three men were injured in the Dnipropetrovsk region. Two of them were hospitalized.

A Russian attack on Nikopol in Dnipropetrovsk damaged seven private residences, five warehouses, cars, and power lines.


Ukraine has honored renowned fighter pilot Lt. Col. Valentin Korenchuk, whose death in combat was confirmed this week.

Korenchuk, whose handle was Beekeeper, was one of the fabled “Ghosts of Kyiv” — the pilots of the 40th Tactical Aviation Brigade who defended Ukraine’s capital in the opening days of Vladimir Putin’s invasion.

Korenchuk shot down a dozen targets including a Russian bomber. The Ukraine Air Force hailed him as its “best pilot”.

Andriy, a mourner at Korenchuk’s funeral in Kyiv, summarized, “The Ghosts of Kyiv were real, and they were [Lt. Col.] Vyacheslav Yerko and Valentin.”

ORIGINAL ENTRY: In a photo opportunity in Pyongyang, Russia’s Vladimir Putin and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un have signed a “strategic partnership agreement”, without offering any detail on the substance.

The signing ceremony was the centerpiece of Putin’s visit, his first since 2000, as North Korea props up his 28-month invasion of Ukraine with artillery shells and missiles.

It did not proceed without incident. As Russian officials — including Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Defense Minister Andrei Belousov, and 1st Deputy Prime Minister Denis Manturov — gathered in the room and laid out papers, North Korean staff told them to leave. Kim had to be the first one entering the ceremony, the Russians were told.

The headline of the agreement was the declaration of a mutual assistance pact, requiring one country to intervene if the other is attacked.

But beyond that, there was silence on the military, economic, and political provisions. Instead, the North Korean summary was a series of platitudes.

  • Moscow and Pyongyang will not enter any agreements with third countries that may threaten their sovereignty and security;
  • Russia and North Korea will try to increase bilateral trade and create favorable conditions for economic cooperation;
  • They agree on cooperation in space exploration, peaceful use of nuclear energy, artificial intelligence, and intelligence technology;
  • They will “invigorate cooperation” to counter “disinformation and information provocations”;
  • And they will pursue measures to “strengthen defense potential to prevent war and ensure peace”.

Rather than detail, the focus was on spectacle, as Putin tried to overtake last weekend’s Global Peace Summit in Switzerland, in which around 80 countries signed the declaration of support for Ukraine against the Russian invasion.

Kim awarded Putin the Kim Il Sung Order, named after Kim’s grandfather, as a “token of boundless respect and confidence of our government and people to him, who has made a special contribution to the development of relations between the two countries”. He also gave the Russian two dogs.

Putin presented Kim with a Russian limousine, with each of the men photographed behind the wheel.

A ceremony in Kim Il-sung Square, with attended by soldiers, an orchestra and balloon-waving children, preceded the talks. Later, the two men laid wreaths at a monument dedicated to Soviet troops who fought in World War II, and attended a gala concert and a state reception.