Sept 10, Colombo: The United Nations says that many countries, including Sri Lanka, have violated sanctions imposed on exporting commodities from North Korea.
The UN says that North Korea illegally exported coal, iron and other commodities worth at least $270 million to China and other countries including India, Malaysia and Sri Lanka in the six-month period ending in early August in violation of UN sanctions.
According to the UN, the value of steel and iron imported from 11 countries from October last year until April this year violating UN sanctions against North Korea was US$ 44,344,912.
The value of iron and steel imported from North Korea by Sri Lanka alone amounted to US$ 1,860,516.
The UN Saturday released a report which was handed over by the experts monitoring sanctions on 5th September. The report says Kim Jong-un's government continues to flout sanctions on commodities as well as an arms embargo and restrictions on shipping and financial activities.
According to the report, Sri Lanka, Barbados, China, Costa Rica, France, El Salvador, India, Indonesia, Ireland and Pakistan have violated the sanctions and imported iron and steel from North Korea.
Sri Lanka has imported steel in October, November, December of last year and January, February and March this year.
In addition, in January and February of this year, Sri Lanka has imported US$ 32,184 worth copper, illegally from North Korea, the 111-page long report states.
Furthermore, the report says that two representatives from the Green Pine Corporation, a company modernizing naval vessels in Angola for North Korea, have come to Sri Lanka and unsuccessfully attempted to sell the marine vessels.
North Korea modernizing the naval vessels of Angola is a violation of the UN sanctions.
Sri Lanka in July this year condemned the hostile acts by North Korea which threatens international peace and security and urged the DPRK to refrain from such hostile acts and programs, in violation of UN Security Council Resolutions, which impact adversely on the stability of the region and beyond.
However President Maithripala Sirisena said he was not aware of the statement issued by the Foreign Affairs Ministry denouncing the North Korean actions.