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Federal Foreign Office and Federal Ministry of Defence on the deployment of the frigate Bayern to help monitor the UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea

12.11.2021 - Press release

The Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of Defence on the deployment of the frigate Bayern to help monitor the UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea (12 November):

From 13 November 2021, Germany will participate for the first time ever in activities to monitor the United Nations Security Council sanctions against North Korea for approximately four weeks in the area around the Korean peninsula. The aim of the sanctions is to prevent North Korea from acquiring and developing weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles.

The frigate will work with other nations as the “eyes and ears” of the United Nations and will collect information about illicit ship-to-ship transfers. Information about suspicious activities and violations will be reported to the Enforcement Coordination Cell (ECC) in Japan, which coordinates the monitoring of the sanctions. Two German liaison officers are currently deployed to the ECC.  

With this deployment, Germany is making an active contribution to uphold the rules-based international order and to the international community’s efforts to prevent the further proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

Background information:

The frigate “Bayern” will be monitoring these sanctions as part of its six-month patrol and training mission to Asia from August 2021 to February 2022. Around 210 crew members are on board the frigate. During its journey, they will dock at several ports in partner countries and take part in international missions, including NATO’s Operation Sea Guardian to strengthen maritime security in the Mediterranean and the EU’s Operation Atalanta to combat piracy off the Horn of Africa.

Executive measures such as boarding or diverting ships are not envisaged under the terms of the UN sanctions monitoring activities. Afterwards, the frigate will also cross the South China Sea. Germany regularly underlines the significance of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) as a comprehensive, universally recognised legal framework, particularly its provisions on freedom of navigation in international waters, as well as the obligatory mechanisms for the settlement of disputes.

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