Published: Wed, October 11, 2017
World | By Melba Underwood

UN slaps global port ban on ships for North Korea sanctions violations

UN slaps global port ban on ships for North Korea sanctions violations

"This is the first time in United Nations history that four ships have been designated by the 1718 committee" after the latest sanctions resolution against North Korea was adopted on September 11, panel coordinator Hugh Griffiths told reporters. The ships were found "transporting prohibited goods", AFP quoted Griffiths as saying. "It's a pretty swift and decisive action by the committee", he said, describing the move as "unprecedented".

According to a source close to the dossier, since the vessels in question have been referred to have carried or continue to carry even today, coal, iron, or fish north koreans, goods expressly targeted by the last trains of Un sanctions. Both have previously vetoed harsher sanctions on the secretive state.

According to a source, the listed ships were the Petrel 8, Hao Fan 6, Tong San 2 and Jie Shun.

European Union members also want to blacklist more North Korean individuals and entities, a move that would freeze their assets in the bloc and ban them from entering its territory.

The sanctions include a ban on the sale of natural gas liquids to North Korea and limitations to the sale of crude oil and refined petrol products. The listed ships are reportedly the "Petrel 8", "Hao Fan 6", "Tong San 2" and "Jie Shun".

As agreed by EU Foreign Ministers at their informal meeting in Tallinn on September 7, 2017, "the Council is now working on possible additional EU autonomous sanctions to complement and reinforce the UN Security Council sanctions", the statement said.

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Hugh Griffiths, co-ordinator of a United Nations panel on North Korean sanctions, described the move as unprecedented. In addition to lead, those goods are estimated to total more than $1 billion - about one-third of the country's estimated US$3 billion in exports in 2016.

The main economic partner of North Korea, China signed the sanctions along with Russian Federation. "But, of course, to be effective, sanctions must be applied by all the world", he argued.

North Korean diplomats were present at the meeting but did not speak, according to diplomats.

However, repeated sanctions have so far failed to deter North Korea from continuing with its nuclear and missile development programmes.

The tightening of trade restrictions followed Pyongyang's sixth nuclear test and the firing of two missiles over Japan.

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