Beijing says vehicles were for civilian use, not covered by sanctions
Chinese military support to North Korea’s missile programs included transfers of rocket transporters, according to a new report by a United Nations panel of experts.
The report by the expert panel of the UN Security Council identified Chinese-origin trucks shown in a military parade last April carrying China’s new KN-11 submarine-launched ballistic missile.
“The trucks carried the ‘Sinotruk’ logo on the fuel tank and shared some identical features with the Sinotruk Howo 6×6 series trucks shown at the 10 October 2015 military parade,” the report said.
It is the second significant transfer of strategic missile technology from China identified by the panel.
In June 2013 the panel revealed the sale by China in 2011 of six to eight transporter erector launchers, known as TELs, that are now part of North Korea’s first road-mobile intercontinental ballistic missile system, the KN-08.
China claimed the KN-08 TEL vehicles were sold as lumber haulers. However, analysts said the 16-wheel launchers are too wide for logging roads. The launchers are made by the Sanjiang Special Truck Co. of the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC).
An earlier UN report in April said Chinese electronic components were found in debris of a North Korean missile test that landed in the Sea of Japan in 2016.
The latest disclosure on Chinese military assistance to North Korea comes amid reports the regime of Kim Jong Un is rapidly developing long-range nuclear missiles while stepping up threats to fire them at American cities and territory.
Rep. Robert Pittenger (R., N.C.) said the report on Chinese support shows that China has not been a good faith partner to the United States on North Korea.
“We must continue to pressure the Chinese, via any means necessary, to ensure they correct their actions related to North Korea, human rights, illegal maritime claims, and a variety of other related national security concerns,” Pittenger said.
Rick Fisher, a military affairs analyst, said the Chinese assistance increased the threat to the United States.
“Let’s be clear, North Korea’s is able to wage surprise offensive nuclear strikes against the United States only because China has supplied the means for North Korea’s missiles to be mobile, to reach launch positions before the United States can strike them,” Fisher said.
“This is really is no less an outrage than Nikita Khrushchev’s supplying nuclear missiles to Fidel Castro’s Cuba,” he said. “Yet for over four years President Obama did not once publicly mention this Chinese outrage, and so far, neither has President Trump.”
Fisher, a senior fellow at the International Assessment and Strategy Center, said the report on Sinotruk vehicles carrying KN-11s provides new evidence of China’s covert role in assisting Pyongyang’s missile launch systems.
This means that China has a definite hand in Korea’s missile launch program !