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North Korea earned $200mn from banned exports, arms-sale

North Korea earned $200mn from banned exports, arms-sale

In violation of United Nations sanctions, North Korean exported roughly $200 million in coal and other commoditie past year, the panel said.

North Korea "continued to export almost all the commodities prohibited in the resolutions, generating nearly $200m in revenue between January and September 2017", the report read, according to the AFP news agency which has seen a copy. United Nations monitors say they found 15 shipments of coal from North Korea to Russia, China, South Korea, Malaysia, and Vietnam that violated United Nations caps on North Korean coal exports between January and August of a year ago.

Despite a 2016 U.N. Security Council resolution that capped coal exports and demanded countries report any imports of North Korean coal since August 5, the U.N. monitors inspected 23 coal shipments to ports in China, Russia, China, South Korea and Vietnam after that date.

The same inspectors added that multinational oil companies, which remained nameless in the report, were also subject to investigation for their participation in the supply chain of petroleum products moved to North Korea, Reuters reported.

According to the report released on Friday, Pyongyang has been assisting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's government in developing its nuclear weapons programme, and has provided Myanmar's army with ballistic missiles. "We found that the ships mentioned did not enter our ports, or if they did, then they were carrying cargo that had nothing to do with North Korea", he is cited as saying.

Have Syria and Myanmar been cooperating with North Korea?

Cold day today, snow planned next week
A wind chill advisory will remain in effect until 10 AM this morning, with wind chills forecast to be 20-25° below. Snow may very well mix with and changeover to rain, especially from the Lehigh Valley and points south and east.

The report to the UN Security Council's sanctions committee states these shipments were mostly made by doctoring paperwork to show the coal came from Russian Federation or China.

The report suggests that North Korea may be helping Syria's Bashar al-Assad maintain his country's banned chemical weapons stockpile despite Syria's agreement to destroy such weapons in 2013. US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that more was needed to be done on the issue of maritime interdiction operations when it comes to stopping sanctions violations.

What's more, during 2012-17, there were about 40 North Korean shipments to companies that oversee Syria's chemical-weapons programme.

"We must put an end to illicit ship-to-ship transfers that undermine United Nations sanctions", he said.

The monitors said one country, which they did not name, told them North Korea had carried out such transfers off its ports of Wonsan and Nampo and in worldwide waters between the Yellow Sea and East China Sea between October and January. China, which accounts for 90% of North Korea's trade, however, claimed that normal trade exchanges like Chinese food, fruit and household products continued.

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