Sunday, 23 September, 2018

United Nations experts 'caved in' to Russian Federation on North Korea sanctions report

U.N. Nikki Haley speaks at press briefing at U.N. headquarters in New York Treasury targets North Korean-run IT companies with financial sanctions | TheHill
Jeannette Daniel | 16 September, 2018, 00:31

In the latest wave of punitive measures on Thursday, . the United States sanctioned two companies in China and Russian Federation for their alleged role in facilitating the North's nuclear weapons program and for allegedly helping the North send workers overseas.

The new sanctions target China-based Yanbian Silverstar Network Technology Co., its North Korean chief executive Jong Song-hwa, and a Russian-based sister company, Volasys Silver Star, the US Treasury Department said in a statement on Thursday. This article is strictly for informational purposes only.

Diplomats said Russian Federation pressured the independent sanctions monitors to amend the report.

The strictest regime of sanctions is now in effect against North Korea, providing for financial sanctions, the ban on supplies of rocket fuel and dual-purpose equipment and materials, and exports of coal, iron, lead and other products from the country.

Haley said Russian interference "sets an unacceptable precedent that damages the sanctity of the United Nations independent panel reporting process".

A panel of independent experts put together in early August a confidential report to a U.N. Security Council sanctions committee.

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White House officials have acknowledged that there has been no progress on denuclearization, even as President Donald Trump considers a second summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The Security Council has to agree by consensus on whether to publish the report and the United States objected to releasing the amended document.

"The full implementation of UN Security Council resolutions remains mandatory for all member states - including Russian Federation".

The Security Council has remained united in imposing tougher and tougher sanctions on North Korea, but the differences over the experts' report mark a first dent in that unity.

The Russian mission to the United Nations and the chair of the independent panel of U.N. sanctions monitors did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

"Treasury is once again warning the IT industry, businesses, and individuals across the globe to take precautions to ensure that they are not unwittingly employing North Korean workers for technology projects by doing business with companies like the ones designated today", Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said in a statement.

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