SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Hamas fighters likely fired North Korean weapons throughout their Oct. 7 assault on Israel, a militant video clip and weapons seized by Israel clearly show, irrespective of Pyongyang’s denials that it sells arms to the militant team.
The video was analyzed by two gurus on North Korean arms. Together with an Involved Press analysis of weapons captured on the battlefield and South Korean armed service intelligence, the video suggests that Hamas utilised the F-7 rocket-propelled grenade, a shoulder-fired weapon that fighters normally use in opposition to armored automobiles.
The evidence shines a light on the murky globe of the illicit arms shipments that sanction-battered North Korea makes use of as a way to fund its arms programs.
Rocket-propelled grenade launchers fire a single warhead and can be immediately reloaded, generating them important weapons for guerrilla forces in managing skirmishes with large automobiles. The F-7 has been documented in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and the Gaza Strip, mentioned N.R. Jenzen-Jones, a weapons professional who will work as the director of the consultancy Armament Study Services.
“North Korea has long supported Palestinian militant teams, and North Korean arms have formerly been documented among interdicted supplies,” Jenzen-Jones informed The Connected Push.
Hamas has revealed photos of their education that present fighters with a weapon with a rocket-propelled grenade with a unique crimson stripe throughout its warhead, and other layout components matching the F-7, mentioned Matt Schroeder, a senior researcher with Smaller Arms Study who wrote a guidebook to Pyongyang’s light weapons.
“It is not a surprise to see North Korean weapons with Hamas,” Schroeder said.
The North Korean F-7 resembles the much more broadly dispersed Soviet-era RPG-7 rocket-propelled grenade, with a handful of noticeable differences.
A militant movie examined by the AP demonstrates one particular fighter carrying the F-7. Weapons seized by the Israeli armed service and demonstrated to journalists also incorporated that crimson stripe and other design and style things matching the F-7.
In a background briefing with journalists Tuesday, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Employees precisely discovered the F-7 as one particular of the North Korean weapons it thought Hamas used in the attack. The Israeli armed service declined to respond to concerns from the AP about the origin and the producer of these rocket-propelled grenades, declaring the ongoing war with Hamas prevented it from responding.
North Korea’s mission to the United Nations did not right away respond to a request for comment from the AP. Nonetheless, Pyongyang last week by way of its state-run KCNA news agency dismissed promises that Hamas applied its weapons as “a groundless and fake rumor” orchestrated by the United States.
Hamas propaganda video clips and pics formerly have shown its fighters with North Korea’s Bulsae guided anti-tank missile. Jenzen-Jones mentioned he believed, based mostly on imagery of the weapons wielded by Hamas fighters, they also utilised North Korea’s Style 58 self-loading rifle, a variant of the Kalashnikov assault rifle.
Iran also has modeled some of its ballistic missiles just after North Korean variants.
Iran’s mission to the United Nations did not right away reply to a request for remark. Officers in Iran lengthy have supported Hamas and have praised their assault on Israel.
In December 2009, Thai authorities grounded a North Korean cargo plane reportedly carrying 35 tons of typical arms, together with rockets and rocket-propelled grenades, as it built a refueling cease at a Bangkok airport. Thai officials then said the weapons have been headed to Iran. The United States later explained in 2012 the shipments interdicted by the Thais had been sure for Hamas.
North Korea also faces Western suspicions that it supplies ammunition, artillery shells and rockets to Russia to support of its war on Ukraine. The White Home said very last 7 days that North Korea lately shipped much more than 1,000 containers of military products and munitions to Russia.
Gambrell noted from Jerusalem.