File photo of North Korean cargo ship, The Kang Nam I

The United Nations has imposed an international “port ban” on four ships it found violating Security Council (UNSC) sanctions on North Korea, the chair of an expert panel says.
“There are four vessels that have been designated by the committee. The designation doesn’t mean an assets freeze or travel ban, but it’s a port ban,” coordinator of a UNSC panel on North Korea sanctions, Hugh Griffith, said on Monday.
Speaking at the conclusion of a UN meeting open to all member states, Griffith further stated that the ships were found “transporting prohibited goods,” pointing out that the measure is “a pretty swift and decisive action by the committee,” adding that the ban went into effect on October 5.
Based on the measures, all nations are banned from allowing four ships transporting prohibited goods to and from the North to enter any port in their country.
AFP cited a source close to the matter as saying that the four ships were detected carrying to North Korea coal, seafood and iron ore, which are exports banned by a UNSC resolution drafted by Washington back in August.
The ban, according to the report, was expanded last month to also include textiles and North Korean guest workers, further capping oil exports to the country, which has in recent months test-launched numerous ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons in response to military threats by the US and its regional allies.
Meanwhile, the report further cited diplomats as saying that North Korean representatives at the UN were in attendance at the meeting but did not speak.
It added that the listed ships were identified as the Petrel 8, Hao Fan 6, Tong San 2 and Jie Shun.
The first three vessels, according to the MarineTraffic website, fly the flags of Comoros, Saint Kitts and Nevis, and North Korea. The Jie Shun, however, is not listed on the site. 

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