N. Korea using Malaysian bank to deal weapons with Myanmar: source

Seoul. North Korea sought payment through a bank in Malaysia for its suspected shipment of weapons to Myanmar that is being carried on a freighter tracked by the U.S. Navy, a source said Saturday, as quoted by Yonhap.The visit by a U.S. envoy to Malaysia this weekend will focus on ways to cut off the payment transaction for the cargo from the bank in Malaysia to North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, the source said.
“Kim will have a hard time collecting his money,” the high-level source said, speaking strictly on condition of anonymity. The source declined to identify the bank due to diplomatic concerns.
Philip Goldberg, the U.S. coordinator for the implementation of a U.N. Security Council resolution that punishes North Korea for its May 25 nuclear test, is scheduled to arrive in Malaysia on Sunday.The visit comes after the White House said late last month that U.S. President Barack Obama discussed North Korea and financial regulations with Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razakon by phone.It also comes as North Korea’s Kang Nam freighter is apparently returning home after being tracked by a U.S. Navy destroyer that suspects it is carrying cargo banned under the resolution.Resolution 1874, which reinforced sanctions that were imposed after North Korea conducted its first nuclear test in 2006, bans Pyongyang from exporting any type of weapons — light or heavy.According to another source in Seoul, the Kang Nam is believed to be carrying small Soviet-era arms such as AK-47 rifles and RPG-7 anti-tank launchers.AK-47s and RPG-7s are two of the most widely traded Soviet-era weapon types that North Korea is capable of producing on its own.
“Kim appears to have received earnest money for the shipment, but it is a small sum compared to the payment held up in Malaysia,” the source said.
Resolution 1874 bans states from making financial transactions with North Korea that could help the communist state build its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.The U.S. slapped financial sanctions on a Macau bank in 2005 to freeze USD 25 million worth of North Korean assets, effectively cutting off Pyongyang’s access to the international financial system.Banco Delta Asia was also accused of helping North Korea launder money it had acquired by circulating sophisticated counterfeit US$100 bills called “supernotes.”Goldberg visited China ahead of his visit Malaysia.Despite the resolution banning development of weapons of mass destruction, North Korea test-fired a series of missiles Thursday and Saturday into the East Sea, where it had imposed a June 25-July 10 maritime ban for a military exercise.North Korea test-fired a barrage of short-range missiles in the days following its latest underground nuclear explosion.The U.S. believes there are “multiple” North Korean ships used to export weapons.

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