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North Korea Asks UN to Deal with ‘Illegal’ Seizure of Cargo Ship by US

The letter also called for “urgent measures” by Guterres and claimed that Washington infringed the North’s sovereignty and violated U.N. charters

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seizure, cargo ships
Undated photo released by the U.S. Justice Dept. on May 9, 2019 shows the North Korean cargo ship Wise Honest. VOA

North Korea has asked United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to deal with the “illegal” seizure of one of its cargo ships by the United States, state media said Saturday.

“This act of dispossession has clearly indicated that the United States is indeed a gangster country that does not care at all about international laws,” the North Korean ambassador to the United Nations said in a letter sent to Guterres dated Friday, according to North Korea’s KCNA news agency.

Pyongyang’s protest to the United Nations over the seizure comes amid mounting tensions since a second summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump, aimed at bringing about the denuclearization of the North, broke down in Hanoi in February.

cargo ship, seizure
The North Korean cargo ship, Wise Honest, middle, was towed into the Port of Pago Pago, May 11, 2019, in Pago Pago, American Samoa. VOA

The letter also called for “urgent measures” by Guterres and claimed that Washington infringed the North’s sovereignty and violated U.N. charters. With the denuclearization talks stalled, North Korea went ahead with more weapons tests this month. The tests were seen as a protest by Kim after Trump rejected his calls for sanctions relief at the Hanoi summit.

ALSO READ: North Korea Blames US of ‘Robbery’ for Seizing Cargo Ship, Demands Immediate Return

North Korea has said the ship seizure violated the spirit of the summit and demanded the return of the vessel without delay.

The U.S. Justice Department said the North Korean cargo ship, known as the “Wise Honest,” was seized and impounded to American Samoa. The vessel was accused of illicit coal shipments in violation of sanctions and was first detained by Indonesia in April 2018. (VOA)

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US: Infections from Three Sexually Transmitted Diseases Hit New Highs for Fifth Consecutive Year

The infection rate rose 3 percent from 2017

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US, Infections, Sexually
FILE - A billboard above a gas station, April 1, 2016, promotes testing for sexually transmitted diseases. VOA

U.S. infections from three sexually transmitted diseases have risen for the fifth consecutive year. US.

More than 1.7 million cases of chlamydia (kluh-MID’-ee-uh) were reported last year. The infection rate rose 3 percent from 2017.

It’s the most ever reported in a year, though the trend is mainly attributed to increased testing.

About 580,000 gonorrhea (gah-nuh-REE’-uh) cases were reported. That’s the highest number since 1991. The rate rose 5 percent. Scientists worry antibiotic resistance may be a factor.

US, Infections, Sexually
More than 1.7 million cases of chlamydia (kluh-MID’-ee-uh) were reported last year. Pixabay

And the syphilis rate rose 15 percent. About 35,000 cases of the most contagious forms of the disease were reported — also the most since 1991.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the numbers Tuesday.

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The increases coincided with public health funding cuts and clinic closures. (VOA)