North Korea on Tuesday said the seizure of one of its cargo ships by the U.S. for violating sanctions was a “robbery” that violated the “fundamental spirit” of a pact made by President Trump and Kim Jong Un last year.
The North Korean foreign ministry said in a statement that it rejected the U.N. security resolutions against their country, which the U.S. used as reasoning to take control of the ship and demanded a return of the vessel.
“The U.N. Security Council resolutions the United States mentioned as one of the reasons for robbing our trade vessel equate to a violent infringement of the sovereignty of our country and we have been entirely rejecting them,” the KCNA statement said. “The United States should carefully consider what kind of consequences their daylight robbery could bring to the political situation and should send back our vessel without hesitation.”
The U.S. announced last week that it had seized the ship and accused the North Koreans of using it to deliver illegal coal reserves to the country, violating sanctions.
The ship, called the “Wise Honest,” was detained by Indonesia in April 2018. The Trump administration announced that it would seize the ship hours after North Korea fired short-range missiles on Thursday.
The ship was taken to a port in American Samoa because of “its central strategic location,” the U.S. Coast Guard said.
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