Putin Presents Car to Kim Jong Un in Valentine's Week Gesture

World Leaders Exchange Lavish Gesture Amid Diplomatic Ties

by Zain ul Abedin
Putin Presents Car to Kim Jong Un in Valentine's Week Gesture
© Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

In a notable display of camaraderie between two prominent world leaders, Russian President Vladimir Putin extended a grand gesture to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un by presenting him with a luxury Russian-made car. This significant event was reported on Tuesday by state media, just days following Valentine's Day, highlighting a strengthening bond between their respective nations.

The car, an Aurus - a prestigious brand established in 2018 for crafting Russia's official state vehicles - was delivered to Kim's representatives on February 18. This gift was personally selected by President Putin, as confirmed by Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov.

Peskov recounted an earlier occasion when Kim had admired the vehicle during a visit to Russia, where Putin himself showcased it. The admiration for the car by the North Korean leader led to Putin's decision to gift it. Kim's sister, Kim Yo Jong, conveyed heartfelt gratitude towards President Putin, as reported by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

She emphasized that this generous gift was a testament to the special personal relationship shared between Putin and Kim Jong Un. However, this gesture has raised eyebrows internationally, with potential implications of breaching U.N.

sanctions imposed on North Korea. A spokesperson from South Korea's foreign ministry highlighted that these sanctions, agreed upon by Moscow, explicitly prohibit the supply of luxury vehicles to Pyongyang.

Symbolic Luxury Gift

The Aurus Senat limousine, the model gifted, is the same vehicle used by Putin.

The manufacturer's website boasts of its vehicle as a symbol of Russia's resurgence in industrial and technological prowess. The car is claimed to offer exceptional ballistic protection, rivalling that of armored military vehicles.

According to Reuters, During a visit to Russia in September, Kim Jong Un had the opportunity to inspect this model of limousine. Putin even invited him to experience the vehicle's luxury firsthand. Despite international sanctions, Kim Jong Un is known for his collection of high-end vehicles, including brands like Maybach, Mercedes, Lexus, and Rolls-Royce.

In a meeting between the two leaders, Kim Jong Un expressed solidarity with Russia in its "sacred struggle to defend its state sovereignty," alluding to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. He affirmed North Korea's support against imperialism.

There have been reports of North Korean weaponry, including rockets and missiles, being supplied to Russia amidst the Ukraine conflict. However, both Russia and North Korea have not confirmed these allegations. If true, such actions would also violate U.N. sanctions, adding another layer of complexity to the international relations between these countries.