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Tokyo says China might have supplied oil to North Korean boat

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Staff Writer | February 21, 2018
Japan has informed the United Nations that it has detected what might be a Chinese ship supplying fuel to a North Korean boat in the East China Sea, in contravention of United Nations sanctions, the foreign ministry confirmed to EFE.
China North Korea boats
International tensions   Japanese authorities detected the meeting
Japanese authorities detected the meeting between North Korean boat Yu Jong 2 and an unidentified ship, with Chinese lettering on its hull, on Feb. 16, and identified a hose connecting the two ships.

"The Government of Japan strongly suspects that they conducted ship-to-ship transfers banned by UNSCR," said the ministry.

Tokyo also submitted photographs in which writing in Chinese - referring to oil and the city of Ningde, in China's Fujian province - could be seen on the hull of the unidentified boat, said the statement.

UN's resolution 2375, adopted after North Korea's sixth nuclear test, had banned from September 2017 any exchanges with North Korean boats.

The meeting between the two boats took place around 250 kilometers (155 miles) east of Shanghai (China) and was the third such meeting that Japan had detected between boats of North Korea and other countries.

South Korean authorities are currently investigating two ships, one from Hong Kong and the other from Panama, for allegedly selling oil to North Korea.

The U.S. had alleged in December that its satellites detected Chinese ships selling crude oil to North Korean ships at least 20 times since October, a charge China has denied.