North Korea continues to sell prohibited goods in contravention of United Nations sanctions, a report from the UN Panel of Experts (PoE) seen by Kyodo News reads.
The DPRK is still able to move weapons and ammunition, according to the Tokyo-based news outlet, while natural resource trade remains a source of income for the regime, despite measures put in place in March last year intended to limit the North’s revenues from coal.
“The DPRK is flouting sanctions through trade in prohibited goods with evasion techniques that are increasing in scale, scope and sophistication,” the Kyodo News article says, quoting the PoE report.
The UN document also mentions that a North Korea-linked vessel called the Jie Shun was seized in Egypt. The interdiction represents the largest seizure of ammunition since the DPRK sanctions regime began.
The NK PRO vessel tracker shows the Jie Shun in a port near the Suez Canal, though its last positional broadcast was over five months ago.
The ship was previously owned by a company tied to Hiroshi Kasatusgu. An earlier PoE report said Kasatsugu had likely helped two North Korean companies – Mirae Shipping and Ocean Maritime Management (OMM) – evade sanctions.
“Any business transactions relating to (Kasatsugu’s) vessels and companies could contribute to sanctions evasion by Mirae/OMM,” last year’s PoE report reads.
According to the Kyodo report Egypt was not the Jie Shun’s final destination, and the case highlighted “an emerging nexus between DPRK entities trading in arms and minerals.”
The PoE report also claims that North Korea continues to trade in minerals like gold and rare earth minerals, despite UN Resolution 2270 passed in March last year prohibiting member states from doing so.
Previous NK Pro analysis of Chinese trade data indicated that some exports of North Korean gold ores continued after the passage of Resolution 2270, though they tailed off to zero some months later.
But a more recent article indicates Chinese companies have continued to import silver, copper, and zinc in December last year, all in apparent breach of a later UN resolution passed in late November.
The Kyodo article added that North Korea continues to use “well trained” agents to move money, weapons, and goods across borders.
The PoE report claims the DPRK continues to use front companies and foreign agents to hide its involvement in transactions, giving the country access to the “top global financial centers”.
Featured image: IMG_4984 by <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/22179161953″>NK10/10</a> on 2015-10-20 16:32:17
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Featured Image: IMG_4984 by NK10/10 on 2015-10-20 16:32:17