US hits Chinese and Russian firms over breach of North Korea sanctions

Pressured by sanctions a North Korean ship passes in front of the waterfront of the Chinese border city of Dandong

The U.S. Treasury said in a statement China-based Dalian Sun Moon Star International Logistics Trading Co. Ltd had netted more than $1 billion a year by exporting alcohol and cigarette products to North Korea.

Kim Hyo-sun reports. The U.S. Treasury Department has imposed sanctions on three shipping companies and one individual for violating restrictions on trade with North Korea.

The Russian was personally involved in North Korea-related deals and interacted directly with North Korean representatives in Russia, the department mentioned.

The sanctions mandate that no USA citizen can deal with any of those designated in the order, and any of their properties in the United States "must be blocked", Treasury said.

They are all accused of helping North Korea evade worldwide sanctions by re-routing exports and imports through Chinese and Russian ports.

"We can only suspend our business now", Liang said.

On August 3, the United States submitted proposals for new global sanctions against North Korea to the UN Security Council 'aimed to achieve complete and verifiable denuclearization of North Korea'.

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The agency further said that the North Korean pig iron was smuggled inside South Korea via a paper firm in Hong Kong.

The Rodong Sinmun, the newspaper of the ruling Workers' Party, said in a commentary that inter-Korean relations can hardly move forward in the interests of the Korean people if sanctions pressure from foreign forces is blindly supported and followed by the South. Since then, the US and North Korea have engaged in further talks about ending Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions, but no agreements have been reached.

It has been angered in the past by unilateral USA sanctions on Chinese firms and individuals.

The United States on Wednesday sanctioned Chinese and Russian firms for their alleged role in helping illicit trade with North Korea in violation of worldwide sanctions. He was quoted as saying on Thursday that a decision on the measures would be taken by Russia's leadership.

It said the Russian firm and its director provided port services at least six times to North Korean-flagged vessels engaged in illicit oil shipments.

"We're waiting for the North Koreans to begin the process of denuclearization, which they committed to in Singapore and which they've not yet done", Mr. Bolton told CNN. "As an agent, I only need to check that they have permission from customs".

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