War Profiteer Profile: CNO-Tech

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A multi-shot vehicle mounted tear gas launcher
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CNO Tech is a South Korean arms company, who manufacturer a range of equipment of weapons for military and law enforcement use, including single and multi-shot “riot” launchers, vehicle-mounted launcher systems, stun grenades, flash bangs, CS gas grenades, foam impact munitions, and various types of armour and shields. The company also manufacturers practice munitions for the military and police. According to the company’s website they were established in 1997 and has offices listed in Seoul, as well as manufacturing facilities in eastern the Gyongsangbuk-do region of Korea.

Relatively little information is publicly available about this CNO Tech, but they are listed as an exhibitor at the 2022 DX Korea arms fair, which is due to take place in September 2022, and has also been identified at other arms fairs, including IndoDefence in 2014 and at MILIPOL in Paris in 2013.

CNO Tech is understood by WRI’s affiliate in South Korea – World Without War - to have sold its products to a wide range of oppressive regimes, including Turkey, Bangladesh, Togo, Indonesia, Bahrain, Oman and Sri Lanka. In 2013, CNO Tech were identified as one of a number of South Korean companies who had exported millions of rounds of tear gas to Turkey, where they were heavily used by the Turkish police to subdue protests.

The Omega Research Foundation, Bradford Non-Lethal Weapons Research Project, and Dr Michael Crowley, profiled the CNO Tech “STARK” 38/40mm launcher in their 2015 report “Tear Gassing by Remote Control”. The report includes correspondence with the company which suggests that the launcher “can’t aim any target precisely – not like a hand-held launcher or a water cannon”. The weapon has a range of 180m.

 

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