United States imposes sanctions on N.Korean IT firms

Pauline Gross
September 16, 2018

The US imposed sanctions this summer on two Russian shipping companies and six vessels, on a Russian port service agency as well as Chinese companies.

The two information technology companies are actually North Korean-controlled entities, the Treasury Department said in a statement Tuesday that accused the Russia-based company Volasys Silver Star, China-based China Silver Star and its CEO Jong Song Hwa of violating U.S. sanctions.

The move to designate the two entities as North Korean-controlled, announced by the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, will ban the firms and their executives from the US financial system and from doing business with US citizens.

An individual from North Korea and a Chinese company are also hit by sanctions.

The United States said that the companies targeted are also linked to the organizations involved in North's weapons program. White House officials acknowledge there's been no progress on denuclearization, even as President Donald Trump considers a second summit with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un.

Meanwhile, South Korea's foreign ministry said that the latest USA sanctions appear to reflect Washington's belief that both sanctions and dialogue are important in achieving the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

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The UN Security Council will meet on Monday over the implementation of sanctions on North Korea at the request of Washington, the U.S. mission to the United Nations said. "Period", Haley said in a statement.

Defense officials say North Korea is regularly employing "deceptive tactics to evade United Nations sanctions" with ship-to-ship transfers, and while the U.S. and allies have been working quietly to thwart that smuggling, the effort will now become more public in an effort to "name and shame" Pyongyang and its enablers.

Haley and other diplomats claim that Russian Federation pressured the independent monitors to amend the report. "The full implementation of U.N. Security Council resolutions remains mandatory for all member states - including Russian Federation".

According to an anonymous United Nations diplomat, the Russia "obtained the removal of the main part of the paragraphs", referring to the panel's original report that had named the Russian ships and entities accused of breaking USA sanctions.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, one diplomat said the amended report removed some references to Russians accused of breaching North Korea sanctions.

Other reports by GizPress

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