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Une cargaison d'armes en provenance de Cuba découverte à Panama sur un cargo nord-coréen en violation de l'embargo des Nations Unies

Une cargaison d'armes en provenance de Cuba découverte à Panama sur un cargo nord-coréen en violation de l'embargo des Nations Unies | Newsletter navale | Scoop.it

Panama says an undeclared Cuban weapons cargo found on a North Korean ship is an "undoubted violation" of the United Nations' arms embargo on Pyongyang.

A draft report by UN experts sent to Panama after the seizure of the ship in July confirmed a breach of sanctions, the ministry of public security said.

Two North Korean diplomats are in Panama to assist the ship's 35 crew.

Cuba said it shipped the arms to North Korea for repair. It did not say why they were hidden under tonnes of sugar.

A source in the public security ministry said authorities had been given a first draft of the report compiled by UN sanctions panel experts, the AFP news agency reports.

The ship, the Chong Chon Gang, was seized on suspicion it was carrying drugs.

The vessel had been navigating the Panama Canal.

Officials found 25 containers of military hardware, including two Soviet-era MiG-21 fighter aircraft, air defence systems, missiles and command and control vehicles.

The statement from the Panamanian public security ministry was released after the North Korean diplomats - from the country's mission in Havana - visited the crew members at a former military base.

 

Satellite tracking


They are being detained on suspicion of arms trafficking; an offence which carries a 12-year prison sentence.

The United Nations inspectors completed their work two weeks ago but are yet to present their official findings publicly.

The Chong Chon Gang left Russia's far east on 12 April and travelled across the Pacific Ocean before entering the canal at the start of June, with Cuba as its stated destination.

The ship disappeared from satellite tracking systems after it left the Caribbean side of the canal, resurfacing on 11 July.

Experts say this may indicate that the crew switched off the system that automatically communicates details of their location.

It was stopped near Manzanillo on the Atlantic side of the canal on 15 July.

Under United Nations sanctions, North Korea is banned from weapons exports and the import of all but small arms.

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Le Conseil de Sécurité demande une approche régionale unitaire contre la piraterie dans le Golfe de Guinée

Le Conseil de Sécurité demande une approche régionale unitaire contre la piraterie dans le Golfe de Guinée | Newsletter navale | Scoop.it

On August 14, the United Nations Security Council called for a comprehensive regional approach to combat the threat of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, and reiterated its call on Member States to prosecute perpetrators in accordance with international laws.

“The Security Council expresses its deep concern at the reported number of incidents and level of violence of acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea in the Gulf of Guinea, in the first half of 2013,” the 15-member body said in a presidential statement.

The Council also reiterated its deep concern about the threat to international navigation, the security and economic development of States in the region, to the safety and welfare of seafarers and other persons, as well as the safety of commercial maritime routes, caused by the illegal activities off the western coast of Africa.

It also noted that international law, as reflected in the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, sets out the legal framework applicable to activities in the ocean, including countering piracy and armed robbery at sea.

In the statement, the Council reiterated its calls on States in the region to criminalize piracy and armed robbery at sea under their domestic law, and to prosecute perpetrators, consistent with applicable international law, including international human rights law.

In addition, it urged the need to investigate and prosecute “anyone who incites or intentionally facilitates such crimes, including key figures of criminal networks involved in piracy who illicitly plan, organize, facilitate, or finance and profit from such attacks.”

The Council noted that neighbouring governments and regional organizations have taken steps to combat piracy. Most recently, Western African leaders met in June at the Summit of the Gulf of Guinea Heads of State and Government on maritime safety and security in Cameroon to establish an effective framework to combat piracy and armed robbery at sea.

At the Summit, participants adopted the ‘Code of Conduct concerning the Prevention and Repression of Piracy, Armed Robbery against Ships, and Illegal Maritime Activities in West and Central Africa’, which defines the regional maritime security strategy and paves the way for a legally binding instrument. The Council welcomed this move and encouraged the regional members to sign and implement the Code “as soon as possible.”

The Council also welcomed recent regional efforts between the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Gulf of Guinea Commission (GGC).

These include a plan to establish an inter-regional centre in Cameroon responsible for coordinating the implementation of the regional strategy for maritime safety and security.

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