A panel of United Nations (UN) experts says in a report that North Korea is circumventing the world body’s sanctions through various measures.
The panel said Pyongyang was resorting to its trusted agents around the world to go around the sanctions in order to obtain materials and equipment it seeks to promote its banned weapons programs, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday.
The panel also said the country has infiltrated operatives into foreign companies so it can conceal its illicit activities.
The country also skirts the sanctions by using diplomatic personnel, longstanding trade partners, and relationships with a small number of trusted foreign nationals, the panel said.
It blasted UN members’ “low level of implementation” of the sanctions regime in place against North Korea. The panel named the “lack of political will” and “low prioritization” among the sources of the lax commitments of some countries to the bans.
The panel report and its conclusions “raise important questions about the overall efficacy of the sanctions regime.”
North Korean officials have yet to comment on this report.
Pyongyang has been under UN sanctions over its nuclear tests and launching missiles considered by the US and South Korea as ballistic and aimed at delivering nuclear warheads.
Last month, North Korea conducted its fourth nuclear test and last Sunday, it successfully launched a long-range rocket that it said placed an earth observation satellite into orbit. However, the United States and South Korea denounced the latter move as a cover for an intercontinental ballistic missile test.
The US, South Korea, and Washington’s other allies, including Japan, are now pursuing new tough sanctions that would hit North Korea’s ability to carry out financial transactions.