Included missiles, two MiG-21 jet fighters and 15 spare engines
By Anthony Bond
Cuba has said missiles and fighter jets found buried under sacks of sugar on a ship bound for North Korea were being sent to the secretive state to be repaired.
The Caribbean nation admitted last night that it owned the military equipment and said it was due to be returned to the island once repairs had been completed.
The admission came after it emerged the captain of the ship had a heart attack and tried to kill himself as authorities in Panama attempted to board the vessel last week.
The 35 man crew – made up of North Koreans – tried to resist arrest by rioting with the authorities.
The ship, which has been identified as the 14,000-ton Chong Chon Gang, was carrying missiles and other arms ‘hidden in containers underneath the cargo of sugar.’
It was seized last week as it tried to cross the Panama Canal. North Korea is barred by U.N. sanctions from importing sophisticated weapons or missiles.