North Korea deals arms with Syria

Featured - May 18th, 2012

A United Nations panel is keeping a close eye on North Korea as speculations rise over weapons-related deals with Syria and Myanmar.

The confidential panel report pointed out that North Korea is continuously defying sanction measures, although such sanctions slowed the country’s illicit transactions.

The report said that nuclear transfers didn’t go underway. However, other violations including illicit sales of arms and other related material were part of the deals. The report named China as a “transit hub for illicit North Korean arms-related breaches”, as the North Korea ally previously blocked past Security Council reports from being published.

Evidence of a Syria-North Korea illicit arms trade surfaced when illicit shipments was seized carrying copper bars and plates that are used for munitions, rockets and missiles, transported via China. The panel is also looking into possible Myanmar-North Korea deal on conventional weapons cooperation which President Thein Sein promised South Korea President Lee-Myung Bak the contrary.

There have been reports that Myanmar’s previous military rulers had been exploring nuclear weapons cooperation with North Korea.