US prepares to sanction Chinese firms over NKorea

Ebony Scott
July 16, 2017

The sanctions being considered would seek to apply economic pressure on businesses and companies in countries with ties to North Korea by denying them access to the U.S. market and financial system.

The overall rise in trade has been driven by China's exports to North Korea, which were up by almost 30% in the first half of the year.

"The maintenance of normal economic and trade exchanges between China and [North Korea] does not violate Security Council's resolutions", the foreign ministry spokesman said. "Just left China's President Xi where we had an excellent meeting on trade & North Korea", Trump stated Saturday.

China announced in February the suspension of coal imports from the North, striking a blow at a major source of income for the hermit state. Previous Chinese customs data showed two-way trade with the North had risen 30.6 percent in dollar terms in the first three months of the year.

In April, China positioned 150,000 troops along their much larger border with North Korea last week, as well as sending a fleet of fully-loaded cargo ships destined for North Korea back home.

China insists none of its current trade with Pyongyang is in violation of worldwide sanctions.

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"The sanctions imposed by the [United Nations] are not a comprehensive embargo", he said.

The UN and the US have attempted to use sanctions for the past decade in an attempt to stem North Korea's nuclear weapons development, but the latest July 4 test, which demonstrated a significant advance in its capabilities, have forced worldwide bodies to reconsider their response going forward. But it is especially anxious about the collapse of the regime with which it shares a border, and fears both an influx of millions of North Korean refugees and the possibility of a unified Korea with US troops again at the Yalu River.

But Beijing is also eager to avoid riling Trump.

Question: There are reports that say North Korea is taking advantage of "loopholes" in United Nations sanctions, increasing exports of iron to China.

"The new figures that the customs bureau have put out today suggest [they] have made an effort, at least on paper", he added.

Other reports by GizPress

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