North Korea tried to export gas masks to Syria this spring, presumably for use in the Middle East nation’s chemical weapons program, but the shipment was intercepted by Turkey along with arms and ammunition, a Japanese newspaper reported Tuesday.
The Libya-flagged ship El Entisar was stopped April 3 by Turkish authorities as it passed through the Dardanelles, the Sankei Shimbun reported. Acting on the tip from the United States, authorities searched the ship and seized 1,400 rifles and pistols and about 30,000 rounds of ammunition as well as the gas masks.
The captain of the vessel admitted that the shipment had come from North Korea, according to the newspaper, which said the plan was for the arms to be unloaded in Turkey and transported by land into Syria to support the government of President Bashar Assad.
Los Angeles Times