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South Korea seizes ship

over “illegal oil transfer”

South Korean authorities seized the 16,500 dwt Hong Kong-flag tanker Lighthouse Winmore when she arrived Yeosu in November. It is alleged that the tanker loaded refined products in South Korea and then transferred her cargo at sea in international waters to North Korean vessels. It has been reported that the ship-to-ship transfers were photographed by US satellites. This would have broken a UN Security Council resolution imposed on 11 September last year.

The Lighthouse Winmore, which has crew of 25 Chinese and Myanmar nationals, was chartered by Billions Bunker Group Corp. South Korean authorities have seized a second ship suspected of supplying oil to North Korea in violation of international sanctions, officials say.

At the end of December South Korean officials said a second tanker, the Panama-flagged Koti, was being held at a port near the western city of Pyeongtaek following similar allegations.

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