The seized North Korean vessel 'M V Mu San' on Wednesday left the Hut Bay in Andaman waters for Kakinada port in Andhra Pradesh where central security agencies and nuclear scientists will thorougly search it.
The ship, escorted by the Coast Guard on its voyage to Kakinada, will be searched for any possible traces of Chemical, Biological, Radioactive and Nuclear material after offloading entire 16,500 metric tonnes of sugar it was carrying to Iraq, official sources said.
The ship's 39-member crew, which also includes a North Korean government official, would be questioned at the port itself, they said.
The questioning of the crew got delayed due to non-availability of a Korean interpreter, they said, adding this was a unique ship where none was fluent in English.
During the initial round of questioning of the ship's Captain, made possible with the help of a local interpreter in Andaman and Nicobar Island, it emerged that the ship was on its way to Iraq after loading sugar in Thailand, they said.
The journey of the ship to Iraq raised suspicion among security agencies as the US would not have hired a North Korean ship for transporting anything to Iraq after the UN imposed sanctions on it in June this year following conduct of nuclear tests on May 25 this year.
UN sanctions imposed on North Korea are tougher than the earlier ones which include provisions for inspection of North Korean ships in ports and on high seas, a tighter ban on arms exports, and curbing loans and money transfers to that country.