N Korean ballistic missiles destabilising Mideast: Israel

Last Updated: Saturday, July 24, 2010 - 15:51

Jerusalem: Accusing North Korea of proliferating ballistic missiles, Israel has said that such activities of Pyongyang are having "dangerous effects" on the stability and peace efforts in the Middle East.

"Israel would like to express its ongoing concern regarding the proliferation of ballistic missiles from North Korea, and to encourage the international community to strengthen its efforts in response to these dangers," Israel`s UN mission said in a letter to the North Korea sanctions committee.

"Israel is particularly concerned by the dangerous effects of the proliferation activities of the Democratic People`s Republic of Korea (North Korea)) on the stability and the peace efforts in the Middle East," Ha`aretz daily quoted the letter as saying.

Earlier, Israel`s ultra-nationalist Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman had claimed that a shipment of North Korean weapons, including rockets and rocket-propelled grenades, seized in Thailand last December was headed for radical group Hamas in the Gaza Strip and Shi’ite militant faction Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Lieberman had also accused Pyongyang of providing Iran and Syria with aid for their missile programmes.

North Korea was hit with fresh UN sanctions last year as a punishment for a nuclear test in May 2009, its second atomic detonation.

The expanded measures were aimed at cutting off North Korea`s arms sales, a vital export through which the country is estimated to earn over a billion dollar a year.

North Korea`s biggest arm sales reportedly come from ballistic missiles, with Iran and some other Middle Eastern states as customers.

A UN panel of experts delivered a report to the North Korea sanctions committee in May that suggested that Pyongyang has been using front companies to export nuclear and missile technology worldwide and has helped Iran, Syria and Myanmar.

Meanwhile, the US said yesterday it had no interest in getting into a "war of words" with North Korea, following the latter`s threat to launch a "sacred war" against Washington and its ally, South Korea.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, July 24, 2010 - 15:51

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