Tue, Nov 07, 2017 - Page 6 News List

Seoul sets sanctions on Pyongyang

AFP, SEOUL

South Korea yesterday announced new unilateral sanctions against Pyongyang — the first under South Korean President Moon Jae-in — a day before US President Donald Trump is to arrive in Seoul on an Asian tour dominated by the North’s nuclear program.

Eighteen North Korean bankers stationed in China, Russia and Libya with suspected links to the regime’s weapons programs have been blacklisted, a statement posted on the South’s government Web site said.

“Those individuals have worked overseas, representing North Korean banks and getting involved in supplying money needed to develop weapons of mass destruction,” the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.

All 18 have already been sanctioned by the US.

The measures were Seoul’s first unilateral sanctions under Moon, who took office in May vowing a peaceful resolution to the nuclear standoff and declared a willingness to visit Pyongyang under “the right circumstances.”

The move bars South Korean individuals and entities from transacting with those on the list. It is to be largely symbolic given a lack of inter-Korean economic ties, but is likely to draw an angry response from Pyongyang.

It also follows a new round of sanctions adopted by the UN Security Council in September following the North’s sixth nuclear test.

Last year, South Korea unilaterally closed operations at the jointly run Kaesong Industrial Complex, saying cash from the zone was being funneled to the North’s weapons program.

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