Four Ships Banned by UN for Carrying Cargo from North Korea, Four More Under US Investigation
By Mei Manuel, October 12, 2017 02:10 AM
At least four ships from different ports known to transport goods from North Korea are now under the blacklist of the United Nations Security Council, including one which carries ammunition according to released documents regarding the issue on Tuesday.
The four ships are the first to face the brunt of the newest sanctions imposed on North Korea after its sixth and largest nuclear test and two long-range ballistic missile launches in August and September.
On October 3, the Security Council's North Korea sanctions committee approved the US's request to blacklist the ships for "transporting prohibited items from the DPRK". Under the directive released by the committee, all 193 member states are now required to prohibit port entry to the following ships: St. Kitts and Nevis ship Hao Fan 6, North Korea ship Tong San 2, Comoros ship Petrel 8 and Cambodia ship Jie Shun. These ships would only be allowed entry if there is an emergency or if it is returning to its home port.
Last year, the Cambodia ship Jie Shun was caught by Egyptian authorities carrying 30,000 rocket propelled grenades hidden under 2,300 tonnes of iron ore. The UN's sanctions monitor reported on February that the discovery was the "largest interdicted ammunition consignment in the history of sanctions against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea." The ship left Haeju, North Korea on July 23, 2016 and was intercepted south of the Suez Canal according to the sanction monitoring team.
Details regarding the three ships and what cargo they carried were not released.
In light of the recent nuclear and ballistic missile testing, North Korea remains under a UN arms embargo and the SC has also banned trade exports which may aid the nuclear and missile program of the hermit nation.
Reuters reported that on the October 3 report of the SC's North Korea sanctions committee, four other ships were withdrawn from the original blacklist roster in the request of the US as the US said these ships should be placed under further study and will present their findings to the committee once it is complete.
Fiji ship Toyo Maru was also added in the original US draft resolution for new sanctions to North Korea on September 11. However, it is not clear whether the UN will still include the ship under blacklist.
So far, nine sanctions have been adopted by the UN Security Council on North Korea since 2006.
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