As China and Russia vetoed a UN resolution to punish Pyongyang,the US answered by imposing sanctions on North Korea that target its weapons of mass destruction programme
Air Koryo Trading Corp, a North Korean company that helped in bolstering Pyongyang’s ballistic missile launches, has been sanctioned by the US Treasury Department.
According to Brian Nelson, the Treasury’s Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, “The United States will continue to implement and enforce existing sanctions while urging the DPRK (North Korea) to return to a diplomatic path and abandon its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles.”
Washington has also targetted two Russian banks, the Far Eastern Bank and Bank Sputnik, for contributing to procurement and revenue generation for North Korean organisations.
The US has also imposed sanctions on Jong Yong Nam, alleged to be working out of Moscow-allied Belarus for North Korea’s weapons research body.
Publicly splitting the UN Security Council for the first time since it started punishing North Korea, China and Russia had earlier vetoed a US-led push to impose more United Nations sanctions on Pyongyang over its ballistic missile launches
North Korea had tested three intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) after US President Joe Biden had departed from Seoul to attend the Quad Summit in Tokyo.
According to a joint statement issued by the top diplomats of South Korea, Japan, and the United States, North Korea had “significantly increased the pace and scale of its ballistic missile launches since September 2021”.
North Korean Kim Jong Un met former US President Donald Trump in 2019 but after three failed summits between them, the talks between the two countries stalled and reached a stalemate.
Ever since then, China has been trying to persuade the US to provide North Korea an incentive to resume talks by lifting some unilateral sanctions.