[VOA 뉴스] North Korea buys ‘third country ships’… Owned by ‘Chinese company’

A third-party ship found in Nampo, North Korea, in August was eventually found to be carrying a North Korean flag. Interest is centering on how a ship once controlled by a Chinese company came to be owned by North Korea. Reporter Ham Ji-ha reports. (Video editing: Myung Soo)

On the map of ‘Marine Traffic’ showing real time information about the location of the ship on the 28th of last month, a cargo ship called ‘Gyeongseong 3’ with a North Korean flag can be seen. It was the same with the third country ship ‘Annie’, which arrived in Nampo, North Korea last August.

At the time, VOA reported that the Annie, which was carrying the flag of the Pacific island nation of Niue, entered Nampo, North Korea, and in just one month, the Niue ship Annie appeared as Gyeongseong 3 of the North ship Korea.

The 2,997 ton Gyeongseong 3 is a relatively new vessel built in 2009, and operated as the No. 1 Chinese loaded Longgang of all time.

However, in April this year, when the flag was raised in Niue, the name was changed to Anyho, and the ownership was changed to ‘Wuzhou Shipping’, believed to be a Chinese company.

Therefore, it is possible that North Korea bought Anyho from Wuzhou Shipping between April and September of this year, and that this company was a secret North Korean company from the beginning.

It is also possible that Wuzhou Shipping acts as a broker in the middle.

The UN Security Council, through Resolution 2321 on North Korea adopted in 2016 in response to North Korea’s nuclear missile development, prohibited UN member states from selling or buying North Korean ships to North Korea.

However, in recent years, North Korea has continued to use front companies to buy used ships.

Recently, VOA reported that the cargo ship ‘Double Happiness 1’, which was owned by Taiwan until July 2021, was reborn as the ‘SF Bloom’, which was shipped to North Korea in March this year.

In addition, several used ships of 10,000 tons or less, once owned by South Korea, were intensively transferred to North Korea in 2019 and 2020 during the Moon Jae-in administration, causing uproar.

In fact, South Korea’s ‘Ri Hong’, found in North Korea’s Songnim Port just 9 days after leaving Incheon Port in December 2019, was controversially transformed into North Korea’s Jaseong Trading Company’s ‘Domyung’.

Also, the ‘Jiyuan’, which was involved in breaking sanctions by moving Mercedes-Benz vehicles to North Korea in 2019, was the ‘Sunny Cedar’ which carried the South Korean flag until two months before the illegal activity was caught, and will be shipped to North Korea from October 2020. Until July 16 of the same year, the ship ‘Suryongsan’ was owned by a Korean shipping company.

In addition, it has been confirmed that the unknown ship ‘New Conk’, which was caught dozens of violations of sanctions against North Korea over the past few years, was once a Korean ship It seemed that it was not to.

Lee Dong-geun / CEO of Woochang Shipping (Last April)

“The size of a ship required by North Korea is usually 10,000 tons or less, so when a contract is made to buy or sell (a ship) of this size, the authorities and the seller of the ship need to look carefully at the source the ship. funds, etc. In addition, legal sanctions are needed against companies with such a history.”

In the midst of this, the United Nations Security Council’s Expert Panel on the North Korea Sanctions Committee confirmed that it is closely monitoring the issues involving the South Korean government in relation to North Korea’s successive purchase of second-hand ships.

This is Jiha Ham from VOA News.

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