Bulgaria 'Ignoring N-Korea Illicit Real-Estate Deals'
North Korea has been generating hard currency through dealings in Bulgaria, Yonhap news agency says in a report.
Citing diplomatic sources, the agency says "real estate dealings in Bulgaria" done by Pyongyang have resulted in raising calls for Sofia to "intervene amid global efforts to choke off sources of revenue" for the North Korean regime.
The North Korean embassy has allegedly lent part of its office buildings in Sofia to business entities specializing in wedding ceremonies and IT, Yonhap says.
Diplomatic personnel is barred from carrying out business activities with real estate registered for diplomatic purposes, under the Vienna Convention.
Bulgaria has not taken any action despite being informed of the wrongdoing by Seoul authorities.
The Foreign Ministry in Sofia has refused to comment.
"Pyongyang's embassy in Bulgaria -- the third largest in scale after its missions in China and Russia -- has around 20 diplomats. Each overseas diplomat is known to remit a set amount of foreign currency to the North, in addition to raising money for the operation of his or her embassy," the report also reads.
Yonhap's story is available here.
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