US imposes sanctions on 5 N.Korean entities over recent ICBM tests

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The US on Friday imposed fresh sanctions on five North Korean entities involved in the North’s recent missile tests that included its first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) launch in over four years.

The five entities include the North’s Ministry of Rocket Industry (MoRI), Yonhap news agency reported, citing the Department of the Treasury.

“Today’s action targets a DPRK WMD research and development organisation that is directly linked to the development of new ICBMs, along with four of its revenue-generating subsidiaries,” the department said in a press release.

DPRK stands for the North’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

North Korea launched an apparent ICBM last Thursday, ending its self-imposed moratorium on long-range missile testing that had been in place since November 2017.

The treasury department noted two North Korean missile tests, staged February 27 and March 5, had also been related to testing a new ICBM system, as earlier identified by the US intelligence community.

“The DPRK’s provocative ballistic missile tests represent a clear threat to regional and global security and are in blatant violation of UN Security Council resolutions,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said, according to the treasury department.

The five entities added to the Office of Foreign Assets Control’s list include four subsidiaries of the North Korean rocket industry ministry. They are Hapjanggang Trading Corporation, Korea Rounsan Trading Corporation, Sungnisan Trading Corporation and Unchon Trading Corporation.

“These trading companies have pursued various activities likely aimed at generating revenue for MoRI,” said the press release, adding that such activities included establishing joint ventures in North Korea, pursuing large-scale projects with Chinese firms and exporting North Korean labor.

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