22 Indian crewmen and oil tanker missing off West Africa
An oil tanker and 22 crewmen are missing in West Africa, off Benin in the Gulf of Guinea. The Panama-registered Marine Express hasn’t made contact since last Thursday. According to the International Maritime Bureau, the Benin Navy is continuing its search for the ship. A vessel was hijacked and released six days later after a ransom was paid. Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj tweeted, “We are making all out efforts in coordination with Nigerian and Benin naval authorities to trace the missing ship.” Though the pirate situation has improved in Somalia, the waters off West Africa are now extremely dangerous for maritime transport. In 2017, there was more than one attack per week in the region.
Man loses license after building tank in China
Police fined a man who built his own tank out of a truck in the city of Laibin, southern Guangxi, China. He was fined the equivalent of $278 and had his license removed. Mr. Huang reportedly spent two months transforming his truck, adding a radar dish and gun turret and modifying its shape. Mr. Huang shared images of his homemade tank with friends on social media last month but also caught the attention of Chinese authorities. He was intercepted by authorities when he tried driving it on the road January 22nd. The police then took him to the station to carry out a safety education assessment. The tank has been confiscated and will be destroyed, officials say.
North Korea earns $200 million by violating sanctions, UN report says
According to a new United Nations report, North Korea earned nearly $200 million by exporting banned commodities last year. The report, which was authored by investigators and sent to a UN committee on North Korea, details how North Korea exported nearly all the commodities the UN had placed sanctions on. The report indicates Vietnam, Russia, Malaysia and China are among the nations exported to. Chinese officials have denied violating sanctions, however. The document states that North Korea “is already flouting the most recent resolutions by exploiting global oil supply chains, complicit foreign nationals, offshore company registries and the international banking system.” The sanctions were placed in 2017 as a result of repeated weapons tests by North Korean military.