WASHINGTON -- North Korea could be developing nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles in defiance of sanctions by collaborating with foreign scientists on "dual use" technology, a new report showed Wednesday.
The Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, California, said it analyzed 1,304 papers co-authored by North Korean and foreign scientists to determine the potential applications of the research to military purposes.
According to the study, first reported by US radio station NPR, about half of the papers could have some military application.
They include at least 100 articles that have "identifiable significance" for dual use technology, weapons of mass destruction, or other military purposes.
Some of the research of concern or potential concern relates to uranium purification, insulation of high-voltage cables for nuclear power plants, and technology applicable to space and missiles, the report said.
By country, China was the most frequent collaborator, co-authoring 913 papers, followed distantly by Germany.
"Direct collaboration between North Korean and foreign scientists is playing an expanding role in the regime's pursuit of technological advancement," the report says.
"Some of these activities may be contrary to provisions in international and national sanctions regimes," it says, noting that UN Security Council resolutions ban the provision to North Korea of technical training, advice, services or assistance related to dual use and military-related technology.
The institute called on UN member states to review the scope of research activities to avoid potential sanctions violations. (Yonhap)