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Seoul, (UrduPoint/Pakistan Point News – 30th Jan, 2023) : NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Monday asked South Korea to “increase” military support for Ukraine and suggested that it change its policy of not exporting weapons to warring countries to review.
Stoltenberg is in Seoul on the first leg of his Asia tour, which will also include Japan, as part of efforts to strengthen ties with the region’s democratic allies in the face of the Ukraine conflict and growing Chinese competition.
He met with senior South Korean officials on Sunday and on Monday urged Seoul to do more to help Kyiv, saying there was an “urgent need for more ammunition”.
He pointed to countries such as Germany and Norway that have a “long-standing policy of not exporting arms to countries in conflict,” which they amended after Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine last February.
“If we believe in freedom, democracy, if we don’t want tyranny and tyranny to win, then they need guns,” he said at the Chey Institute in Seoul.
South Korea is a major arms exporter worldwide and has recently signed agreements to sell hundreds of tanks to European countries, including NATO member Poland.
But South Korean law prohibits arms exports to countries in conflict, which Seoul says makes it difficult to deliver weapons directly to Kiev, even though it has provided illegal and humanitarian aid.
South Korea opened its first diplomatic mission in NATO last year.