A confidential UN monitor report claimed North Korea has earned nearly $200 million in exports in 2017, according to Reuters. In addition, Pyongyang reportedly traded arms with Syria and Myanmar. The isolated dictatorship remains under strict UN sanctions targeting its raw material exports.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un Photo Credit: EPA

North Korea reportedly earned nearly $200 million in 2017 by exporting commodities and violating UN sanctions, according to a Reuters report citing a confidential UN document. Pyongyang has also reportedly been supplying weapons to war-stricken Syria and Myanmar.

The report included details concerning North Korean coal shipping that was mainly conducted using false documents. The coal had reportedly been shipped worldwide to countries such as China, South Korea, Russia, Malaysia and Vietnam. The false paperwork apparently showed countries such as Russia and China as the origin of the merchandise, instead of North Korea.

According to Reuters, the authors of the report investigated North Korean arms shipments with Syria and Myanmar. Between 2012 and 2017, Pyongyang has reportedly conducted over 40 shipments to the Syrian Scientific Studies and Research Center, a body that oversees the chemical weapons program in the country.

Recent UN Sanctions against North Korea have focused on the country’s export of coal, gas and other raw materials. In December, North Korea’s Foreign Minister said countries that support imposing new sanctions on his country will “face the consequences.”

As previously reported by JOL, US President Donald Trump in January accused Russia of aiding Pyongyang to violate international sanctions. The president also claimed Moscow is sabotaging Washington’s efforts to halt the North Korean nuclear development program.