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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

US Navy Seals seize North Korean oil tanker

17 March 2014, 15:01 -- US Navy Seals boarded and took control of a North Korea-flagged tanker that had loaded crude oil at a port held by rebels in eastern Libya, the Pentagon said on Monday. No one was hurt 'when US forces, at the request of both the Libyan and Cypriot governments, boarded and took control of the commercial tanker Morning Glory, a stateless vessel seized earlier this month by three armed Libyans,' Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Admiral John Kirby said in a statement.

Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby said the Seals successfully took control of the rogue vessel, and that their actions had been approved by President Barack Obama.

The arrival of the Morning Glory vessel at the As-Sidra port sparked a chain of events which led to Libyan prime minister Ali Zeidan being voted out of office by his own parliament.

The tanker was able to break a Libyan government naval blockade on the port, illegally pick up a reported 234,000 barrels of state-owned crude oil that had been seized by rebels.

The Libyan navy tried to seize the vessel and escort it to a government-held port on 10 March, but despite being fired upon it was able to escape.

Mr Kirby's statement said: 'The Morning Glory is carrying a cargo of oil owned by the Libyan government National Oil Company. The ship and its cargo were illicitly obtained from the Libyan port of As-Sidra.'

The Cypriot ministry of foreign affairs told Reuters the vessel was now heading west in the Mediterranean with a US military escort. It had been anchored 18 miles (29 km) southwest of Cyprus when the Navy Seals operation was carried out at around midnight Cyprus time.

The ship was operated by an Egypt-based company that was allowed to temporarily use the North Korean flag under a contract with Pyongyang, North Korean state news agency KCNA said.

Pyongyang had "cancelled and deleted" the ship's North Korean registry, as it violated its law "on the registry of ships and the contract that prohibited it from transporting contraband cargo".

Voice of Russia, independent.co.uk, scmp.com

Source: http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2014_03_17/US-Navy-Seals- seize-North-Korean-oil-tanker-8607/

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