UN report finds North Korea and Iran sharing missile tech; China facilitated exchange

East-Asia-Intel.com, May 18, 2011

A United Nations report made public last week reveals that North Korea and Iran have been sharing ballistic missile technology in violation of UN sanctions.

The confidential report, disclosed by Reuters stated that the transfers of banned technology were transshipped through a third country, identified by diplomats at China.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, second left, reviews Iran’s Shahab-3 missile.

The report to the Security Council was produced by a U.N. Panel of Experts that monitor compliance with U.N. sanctions imposed on Pyongyang following its two nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009.

The sanctions ban trade in nuclear and missile technology with North Korea, as well as an arms embargo. They also banned trade with a number of North Korean firms and called for asset freezes and travel bans on some North Korean individuals.

"Prohibited ballistic missile-related items are suspected to have been transferred between the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) and the Islamic Republic of Iran on regular scheduled flights of Air Koryo and Iran Air," the report said.

"For the shipment of cargo, like arms and related materiel, whose illicit nature would become apparent on any cursory physical inspection, (North) Korea seems to prefer chartered cargo flights," it said.

The aircraft fly "from or to air cargo hubs which lack the kind of monitoring and security to which passenger terminals and flights are now subject."

Cables made public on WikiLeaks have revealed that China in the past facilitated arms shipments from North Korea to Iran by providing transit stops for cargo jets.



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