Panama stopped the North Korean ship last week and seized its cargo. Authorities discovered missile equipment, MiG fighter jets and other arms aboard that Cuba said were "obsolete" Soviet-era weapons being sent to North Korea for repair.
A UN arms embargo on North Korea covers all exports by Pyongyang and most imports, with the exception of small arms and light weapons and related materiel. But in order to export small arms to Pyongyang, states must notify the Security Council's North Korea sanctions committee in advance.
An eight-member panel of experts appointed by Ban Ki-moon monitors the Security Council sanctions imposed on North Korea.
The experts are mandated to "gather, examine and analyze information from States, relevant United Nations bodies and other interested parties" on allegations of sanctions violations and report back to the Security Council's sanctions committee.
Voice of Russia, Reuters