US anger at Russia changes to UN N.Korea report

Treasury targets North Korean-run IT companies with sanctions

Treasury targets North Korean-run IT companies with sanctions

The United States on Thursday sanctioned two companies in China and Russian Federation for allegedly facilitating North Korea's nuclear weapons program.

Treasury's Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC), which administers sanctions, targeted China-based Yanbian Silverstar Network Technology Co., Ltd., also known as China Silver Star, its North Korean CEO Jong Song Hwa, and its Russia-based affiliate Volasys Silver Star. This article is strictly for informational purposes only.

It also said Pyongyang continues to defy global sanctions through a "massive increase" in illicit ship-to-ship transfers of refined petroleum products.

The Treasury Department said China Silver Star is linked to the North Korean ruling party's Munitions Industry Department, . which it says is responsible for overseeing the regime's ballistic missile program.

Russian Federation argued the report filed to take into consideration Moscow's own analysis of the sanctions and that it had relied too heavily on intelligence from the US.

Russian Federation at the end of August had blocked publication of the report on the implementation of sanctions against North Korea because it disagreed with findings that Pyongyang had exceeded a 2018 import cap for oil set by the sanctions imposed previous year, a diplomatic source said last month.


The Department of the Treasury also sanctioned a North Korean individual in the latest set of sanctions aimed at denuclearizing the regime.

"The full implementation of UN Security Council resolutions remains mandatory for all member states - including Russian Federation. Period", Haley said in a statement.

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.

"These actions are meant to stop the flow of illicit revenue to North Korea from overseas information technology workers disguising their true identities and hiding behind front companies, aliases, and third-party nationals", Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said on Thursday.

Nikki Haley, US ambassador to the United Nations, expressed disappointment in the panel monitoring sanctions against North Korea "for caving to Russian pressure and making changes to what should have been an independent report".

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