Published: Tue, August 22, 2017
Money | By Armando Alvarado

USA hits Russian, Chinese entities with sanctions over aid to North Korea

It added that the Treasury Department's actions are complimentary to an August 5 resolution by the U.N. Security Council that holds Pyongyang responsible for its continued testing of missiles and other weapons of mass destruction. His government has denounced annual U.S. The US Treasury announcement accuses Gefest-M of supporting a United Nations sanctioned Korea Tangun Trading Corporation, an affiliate of Second Academy of Natural Sciences, which is "involved in North Korea's WMD and missile programmes". It follows an escalation in US and United Nations sanctions in response to a series of weapons test and threats by the regime to destroy America. Ltd., for selling petroleum products to North Korea.

But despite concerns that time for a diplomatic solution may be running out, several analysts say that sanctions targeting the heart of North Korea's missile funding should still play a key role in United States strategy going forward.

The Trump administration on Tuesday announced new sanctions on Chinese and Russian individuals and businesses accused of helping North Korea boost its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

The United States should "immediately correct its mistake" of imposing unilateral sanctions on Chinese companies and individuals to avoid damaging bilateral cooperation, a Chinese embassy spokesman said on Tuesday.

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It is the second time in less than two months that Washington has slapped so-called secondary sanctions on third-country entities and individuals suspected of aiding Pyongyang's weapons program.

"North Korea generates a significant share of the money it uses to fuel its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes by mining natural resources and selling those resources overseas", the US Treasury Department said in its announcement. The Russian firm Gefest-M allegedly procured metals for a North Korean mining company with a Moscow office. There's no focus on the efforts of Chinese banks that facilitate these transactions.

Three Chinese companies facing sanctions imported half a billion dollars worth of North Korean coal between 2013 and 2016, money the Treasury Department said it uses to fund its weapons program. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has been pushing countries that do business with North Korea to refuse to hire North Korean workers and reduce the country's diplomatic presence within their borders.

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