Cuba says loaded seized North Korean cargo ship with ‘obsolete’ weapons
HAVANA (Reuters) – Cuba said a North Korean cargo ship seized in Panama on Monday was loaded at one of its ports with 10,000 tons of sugar and 240 tons of “obsolete defensive weaponry,” according to a statement released on Tuesday by the Cuban Foreign Ministry.
Cuba said the weapons were being sent back to North Korea for repair and included two anti-aircraft batteries, nine disassembled rockets, and two MiG-21 aircraft, all Soviet-era military weaponry built in the middle of the last century.
By Marc Frank, Reuters
(Writing by David Adams; Editing by Stacey Joyce)
A related article from Xinhua News Agency:
Cuba says seized DPRK ship carries obsolete weapons
|Photo taken on July 16, 2013 shows alleged weapons on a cargo ship of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) at the Manzanillo Port in Colon City, Panama. The Cuban Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday that a cargo ship of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) seized in Panama was loaded with anti-aircraft missile parts and MiG-21 fighter jets to be returned to the DPRK for repair. (Xinhua/Mauricio Valenzuela)|
HAVANA, July 16 (Xinhua) — A cargo ship of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) seized in Panama was loaded at a Cuban port with 240 tons of “obsolete defensive weaponry,” the Cuban Foreign Ministry said Tuesday.
The ship, also loaded with 10,000 tons of sugar and the weapons such as two anti-aircraft missile batteries, nine disassembled rockets, two MiG-21 fighter jets, and 15 MiG-21 engines, were being sent back to the DPRK for repair, the ministry said in a statement.
The weapons, all built in the middle of the last century, were required “to maintain our defensive capacity to preserve national sovereignty,” the statement said, adding that they would be returned to Cuba after repair.
“Cuba maintains its commitment to peace including nuclear disarmament and international law,” it said.
Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli said on Monday that a DPRK-flagged cargo ship suspected of hiding missile equipment in a shipment of sugar from Cuba, was seized.