UN report: North Korea has not stopped nuclear, missile programs

UN report: North Korea has not stopped nuclear, missile programs
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North Korea's government is continuing its ballistic missile program as well as its nuclear weapons development, according to a United Nations (U.N.) report seen by Reuters on Friday.

The news outlet reports that a six-month report from independent experts monitoring North Korea's compliance with U.N. sanctions stated that North Korea continues to develop its banned weapons programs and is openly violating international sanctions.

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“[North Korea] has not stopped its nuclear and missile programs and continued to defy Security Council resolutions through a massive increase in illicit ship-to-ship transfers of petroleum products, as well as through transfers of coal at sea during 2018,” the report says, according to Reuters.

In addition to textile exports to a number of countries including China and Mexico, the U.N. report said North Korea has also been involved in weapons cooperation with Syria's government amid the country's civil war, and has been attempting to sell arms to Yemen's Houthi rebels.

“[P]rohibited military cooperation with the Syrian Arab Republic has continued unabated," the report stated, adding that illegal North Korean petroleum sales had “increased in scope, scale and sophistication.”

The report comes just days after President TrumpDonald John TrumpJimmy Carter: 'I hope there's an age limit' on presidency White House fires DHS general counsel: report Trump to cap California trip with visit to the border MORE tweeted praise for North Korea's Kim Jong Un over the return of U.S. remains from the Korean War and seemed to suggest the two leaders could meet for a second time after their historic summit in June.

"Thank you to Chairman Kim Jong Un for keeping your word & starting the process of sending home the remains of our great and beloved missing fallen! I am not at all surprised that you took this kind action. Also, thank you for your nice letter - l look forward to seeing you soon!" the president tweeted on Thursday.

Trump declared in June that the nuclear threat from North Korea had ended, a statement apparently directly contradicted by Friday's report.

"Just landed - a long trip, but everybody can now feel much safer than the day I took office," Trump tweeted. "There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea. Meeting with Kim Jong Un was an interesting and very positive experience. North Korea has great potential for the future!"