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North Korea sanctions: United Nations blacklists shipping firms

03 April 2018, 04:45 | Myrtle Vega

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South Korean Unification Minister Cho Myoung Gyon and Ri Son Gwon chairman of North Korea's Committee shake hands

Ambassador Nikki Haley said the North Korea Sanctions Committee, which comprises all members of the U.N.'s most senior decision-making body, unanimously approved designations of 21 shipping companies, one individual and 27 ships.

The measures were proposed by the United States last month as part of a crackdown on the maritime smuggling of North Korean commodities such as oil and coal.

The United Nations dropped the hammer Friday on companies and persons helping North Korea skirt tough global sanctions meant to punish it for its illegal weapons testing.

The action bans global port entry for 13 North Korean oil tankers and cargo vessels, and 12 other ships suspected of helping North Korea smuggle oil and banned commodities.

In a statement released by the Security Council on its website on Friday, the council said the Taiwanese Tsang Yung-yuan (張永源) "has coordinated North Korean coal exports with a North Korean broker operating in a third country".

The Security Council of the United Nations has imposed sanctions against North Korea, which involved a Taiwanese national who has been accused of helping Pyongyang evade global trading bans.

Despite the diplomatic opening, the United States has made clear they will keep the pressure on Pyongyang to shift course by pressing on with sanctions.

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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the government would continue probing whether other Taiwanese individuals or entities might have helped North Korea.

Also blacklisted was Taiwanese businessman Tsang Yung Yuan, who was hit by a global travel ban and assets freeze for organising illegal shipments of North Korean coal with a North Korean broker in Russian Federation.

The assets of the 21 shipping companies, which include businesses based in the Marshall Islands, Singapore, Panama and Samoa, must be frozen.

The latest restrictions are directed not just at North Korea's shipping operations but Chinese companies trading with Pyongyang.

However, the situation has eased significantly since North Korea in February sent athletes to the Winter Olympics in South Korea.

The reason for the adoption of the list was the need to limit smuggling.

Earlier this month, the White House said Trump and Chinese leader Xi Jinping agreed in a phone conversation to keep up the sanctions pressure on North Korea until Pyongyang takes concrete steps toward denuclearisation.



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