The failure of the Trump-Kim summit in Hanoi has probably forced Kim Jong-un to look around for other leaders who can help him to break out of the shackles of his hermit kingdom. The economic sanctions are hurting him and that is the main bone of contention for the failed Hanoi summit. Kim’s priority is the ease of sanctions which conflicts with Trump’s focus on denuclearization. It is possible Kim could revert to his old nuclear tactics.

There are reports in the media that he had inspected and directed a "new tactical guided weapons firing test."

CNN goes on to add that the timing of the meeting between Kim Jong-un and Vladimir Putin coincides with the failure of the nuclear negotiations between Pyongyang and Washington in Hanoi.

It has gone as far as North Korea's foreign ministry demanding that the United States replace its Secretary of State Mike Pompeo before they would move ahead with any further negotiations. They blame Pompeo for making “loose, reckless” remarks that have led to the present situation.

Kim Jong-un could renew weapon testing

North Korea derives their confidence from the nuclear weapons in their armory and they conducted their last "tactical" weapons test in November 2018.

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Donald Trump

In January 2019, Kim Jong-un began talks of peace and tried to mend fences with South Korea by participating in the Winter Olympics. Then came the first summit with Donald Trump in Singapore followed by the second one in Hanoi. However, the positives in the first made way for disappointment in the second, which ended abruptly within minutes. America must now modify its strategy.

On this subject, CNN says the accusations against Mike Pompeo came after an announcement in NK state media about Kim inspecting a new weapon that fell in the category of a “guided weapon.” There were no details released regarding the kind of weapon or its potential range.

From the vague description provided by KCNA, it could be a tactical weapon for use on the battlefield and not a long-range armament. Kim has described it as a “great historic event in strengthening the combat capability of the People's Army." U.S. authorities that monitor such activities confirmed that there was no missile launch.

Vladimir Putin has invited Kim Jong-un

According to The Guardian, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will visit Russia in late April at the invitation of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The meeting will be held in the second half of April and the Kremlin has not provided details of the exact date or location. However, media reports suggest it would be in Russia’s far east. The visit of an official of Pyongyang to the train station in the far eastern city of Vladivostok lends credence to this because the station is in close proximity of Russia’s border with North Korea.

Vladimir Putin has wanted to meet with Kim Jong-un for a long time.

Russia has good relations with the reclusive regime and provides them with aid. The last summit, between heads of the two states, was in 2011 when Kim’s father, Kim Jong-il, had met the then-president Dmitry Medvedev in Siberia.

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