China steps up on North Korea: Chinese take ‘gigantic step’ to pressure Kim Jong-Un

Wednesday, September 27, 2017
By Paul Martin

CHINA’S decision to slap economic sanctions on North Korea has been welcomed by US officials who say the move shows Beijing is “serious about living up to the commitments” to halt the escalating crisis in the region.

Wed, Sep 27, 2017

Washington’s Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said an order for Chinese banks to stop doing business with Pyongyang was a “logical next step in the sanctions, and a very important one”.

Mr Ross said: ”Chinese commercial banks had been a big route for facilitation of trade to North Korea so the fact that the People’s Bank of China has put out a taboo, that’s a very big deal.”

Bosses at the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) – the essentially the country’s central bank – sent out a directive last instructing domestic banks to implement United Nations sanctions against North Korea.

The Trump administration has announced another round of economic sanctions against Pyongyang, blacklisting eight North Korean banks and 26 individuals the US Treasury Department said were operating in China, Russia, Libya and the United Arab Emirates.

The administration said the North Korean banks are used to help finance development of weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear bombs and the individuals were working with the North Korean financial system.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said: “We are targeting North Korean banks and financial facilitators acting as representatives for North Korean banks across the globe.

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