UN team to investigate N Korean arms shipment

2013-07-23 01:48:45 GMT2013-07-23 09:48:45(Beijing Time)  SINA.com

United Nations experts will be dispatched to Panama soon to determine whether a North Korean ship violated a UN arms embargo against the North.

Panama asked the UN Security Council to investigate the ship and its contents. The vessel bound for North Korea was intercepted by Panamanian officials in mid-July. It was found to be carrying arms from Cuba, including 2 MiG-21 fighter jets and possible missile components.

North Korea and Cuba have said the shipment contained obsolete weapons being sent to North Korea to be repaired and returned, and so is within legal limits.

Panama's authorities have charged the North Korean captain and 35 crewmembers with attempting to smuggle undeclared weapons through the canal.

They also requested earlier that the United Nations look into the matter.

Panama announced on Sunday that experts will arrive early next month to examine the shipment.

Should the team confirm that the freighter had been transporting weapons in violation of the UN embargo, the case will be likely brought to the UN Security Council's sanctions committee.


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