NEW YORK, MAY 2 – New elements on the Mansudae Art Studio, the art factory in downtown Pyongyang that produces colossal statues and whose export has been banned by the current embargo, were provided in a new meeting of the Sanction Committee on North Korea with its Panel of Experts and member states of the African Group. The Sanctions Committee is chaired by Italy.
Founded in 1959 and employing about 4,000, the Mansudae Art Studio is involved in providing monuments to at least 15 African countries. The factory operates on behalf of KOMID, a company already targeted by the UN because it illegally sells conventional weapons and ballistic missiles, Un diplomates were told in the meeting. The case was one of a series brought by the Panel of Expert as an example of the sophisticated techniques used by North Corea to evade the sanctions regime, especially through their diplomatic representatives abroad.
The meeting was the third regional outreach by the Sanction Committee under the Italian presidency with the goal of facilitating information with the membership and the Panel of Experts. About twenty members of the African Group attended. Previously the Committee met with members of Latin America and Eastern Europe, while a new meeting is planned for the WEOG countries on May 12. (@OnuItalia)