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Report: Russia proposed building North Korea a nuclear power plant

Putin and a North Korean official
Kim Yong-nam, president of the Presidium of Supreme People's Assembly of North Korea, and Russian President Vladimir Putin in June 2018. Photo: Mikhail Metzel/TASS via Getty Images

U.S. intelligence officials say Russia made a secret proposal to North Korea last fall —dismantle its nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles in exchange for a nuclear power plant, the Washington Post reports.

The big picture: This marks yet another example of an emboldened Russia intervening publicly and privately in key global hotspots, often in direct conflict with U.S. interests. Earlier Tuesday, Russia doubled down on its criticism of the Trump administration's latest round of sanctions against the government of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, for whom Russia has expressed continuing support.

Go deeper: Coats contradicts Trump: North Korea unlikely to give up nukes