18.02.27 North Korea & Syria

February 28, 2018
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Dangerous Duo:


North Korea & Syria North Korea shipping chemical weapon supplies to Syrian government, according to a United Nations report reviewed exclusively by the New York Times.

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What NYT Reports

  • North Koreans spotted at chemical weapons facilities inside Syria.
  • Supplies include valves, acid resistant tile, & thermometers.
  • Syria’s ‘payment’ for chemical weapons supplies could help fund North Korea’s nuclear program.
  • Dozens of black market shipments: 2012-2017

What You Should Know:

  • NYT reporting on one United Nations report, that no other outlet has at the time of our writing.
  • UN would not comment to NYT.
  • UN report is not public, nor do we know if it will ever become public.
  • However, there is precedent for military relationship between North Korea & Syria.

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Context:
North Korea & Syria

  • North Korea helped SyriaA build aA nuclearA power plant that could aid in Syria’s development of nuclear weapons. (Reminder – North Korea has nuclear weapons).
  • Some experts say North Korea helped Syria buildA chemical weapon stockpile dating back to the 1990s.

Public Reaction To Report

  • Commander, U.S. Central Command, asked about report during congressional testimony; General Votel said he had not seen report, but had concerns about use/spread of chemical weapons inside Syria.
  • White House: “no comment” when asked about report during daily press briefing.

Timing: America levied serious sanctions against North Korea shipping companies last Friday. Also reminder: President Assad agreed to ‘destroy’ his chemical weapons back in 2014. Use of chemical weapons illegal & sanctioned by UN.

SCOOP: U.N. Links North Korea to Syria”s Chemical Weapons ProgramA https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/27/world/asia/north-korea-syria-chemical-weapons-sanctions.html

by Jenna Lee,

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