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INTERNATIONAL > East Asia & Pacific

N. Korean scientists accepted at nuclear institute in Russia: Japanese expert

Tokyo, Oct. 5 (Jiji Press)–North Korean scientists were once accepted at an international nuclear research institute in Russia, a former Japanese member of an experts’ panel set up under the U.N. Security Council’s sanctions committee, said in a recent interview with Jiji Press.

Several North Korean scientists worked at the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research, which has 18 members including North Korea, until early 2015, before the country was suspended from its membership due to its failure to pay membership fees, according to Katsuhisa Furukawa, who served as a member of the U.N. experts’ panel until April this year.

Security Council resolutions prohibit all nuclear-related activities by North Korea, “but Russia and the institute have explained that the institute conducts basic research, which has nothing to do with nuclear weapons,” Furukawa, 49, said.

“But I think it was a clear violation of the Security Council resolutions, given that the institute certainly conducts ‘nuclear’ research,” he stressed.

North Korea’s representative at the Russian institute was Atomic Energy Industry Minister Ri Je Son, who is on the list for U.N. sanctions, Furukawa noted.

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