Port Ban Imposed on Four Ships for Violating North Korea Sanctions

The United Nations Security Council has imposed a global port ban on four ships due to their violation of sanctions against North Korea.

The said ships are Petrel 8, Hao Fan 6, Tong San 2 and Jie Shun, which have been designated pursuant to paragraph 6 of the Resolution 2375, a document from the UN Security Council shows.

The two bulk carriers, the 2011-built Petrel 8 and 2009-built Hao Fan 6 are flagged in Comoros and St Kitts Nevis respectively, while the two other vessels are general cargo ships registered in Cambodia and DPR Korea.

According to Mr Griffiths, the coordinator of a UN Security Council panel on North Korea sanctions,  the ships were found “transporting prohibited goods”, BBC reports.

The Resolution was adopted by the UNSC on September 11, 2017, with the aim of strengthening UN sanctions on North Korea in response to the Pyongyang’s nuclear test conducted on September 2, 2017.

The measures included in the resolution are banning the export of textiles, preventing overseas workers from earning wages that finance the North Korean regime, and reducing about 30% of oil provided to North Korea. The resolution also includes strong maritime provisions enabling countries to counter North Korean smuggling activities of prohibited exports by sea, the UN said.

Specifically, the resolution provides member states tools to stop high seas smuggling of prohibited products (e.g., conventional arms, coal, textiles, seafood, etc.).

According to the UN, North Korea has been smuggling coal and iron ore to other countries using very sophisticated evasion techniques by sea, including reflagging of ships.

The latest prohibition has been imposed on the back of heightened sanctions introduced by the Trump administration and China, a country considered to be North Korea’s strongest ally.

China imposed a ban on the export of condensate oil and liquefied natural gas to North Korea taking effect on September 23, Chinese Ministry of Commerce said.

Furthermore, a restriction was imposed on export of refined oil products to North Korea from October 1 and textile imports from the country.

World Maritime News Staff