Even if there’s a UN resolution (signed by China by the way) which drastically caps North Korea’s oil imports, satellite images caught Chinese ships red-handed, i.e. selling oil to the North Koreans. This happened not once, but more than thirty times since the end of October,as per a Wednesday report via South Korean media. Satellite imagery depicts North Korean and Chinese ships illegally swapping oil in the West China Sea, which is very close to mainland China. That respective location was chosen to avoid detection from South Korea, or at least that’s the theory.
However, oil smugglers forgot about satellites. A South Korean official was quoted as saying:
“We need to focus on the fact that the illicit trade started after a UN Security Council resolution in September drastically capped North Korea’s imports of refined petroleum products”
Speaking of the Septembre UN resolution 2375, the one in question which bans ship to ship trade with Pyongyang, violations are nothing out of the ordinary, because China doesn’t care much about smugglers, nor the UN.
If you ask me, I don’t think this is really news, China and Russia never live up to the sanctions that they vote for at the United Nations. Their votes are symbolic for the rest of the world to see, a sort of moral posturing if you like.