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UN Orders Ship Searches to Find Al-Shabaab’s Charcoal

The United Nations Security Council authorized naval inspections of ships off Somalia’s coast and beyond suspected of carrying illegal weapons and charcoal, a commodity that generates millions of dollars a month in revenue for militants linked to al-Qaeda.

Thirteen of the council’s 15 members voted today in favor of the text, while Russia and Jordan abstained. The resolution orders “strict implementation of the arms embargo on Somalia and the charcoal ban” to inspect vessels bound for Somalia, in its territorial waters and on the high seas, including in the Arabian Sea and Persian Gulf.