16 Oct 2017
The European Union on Monday ratcheted up pressure on North Korea (DPRK) over its nuclear, imposing fresh restrictions aimed crippling its armament and cash flows.
The measures, which take immediate effect, include a total ban on EU investment in the DPRK across all sectors.
Previously the ban was restricted to investment in areas such as the nuclear and conventional arms-related industry, in the sectors of mining and aerospace.
A total ban on the sale of refined petroleum products and crude oil to the DPRK was also imposed, as was lowering the amount of personal remittances transferred to the DPRK from 15,000 euros to 5,000 euros “as they are suspected of being used to support the country’s illegal nuclear and ballistic missile programmes,” the EU said in a statement.
EU member states also agreed not to renew work authorisations for DPRK nationals in their territories, except for groups like refugees, with a view to eliminating remittances to North Korea.
In addition, the EU’s Council also imposed asset freezes and travel restrictions on three individuals and six entities.
The EU first introduced restrictive measures against the DPRK in December 2006.
Monday’s measures come after the EU Foreign Affairs Council discussed the continuing development of North Korea’s nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles “in violation and flagrant disregard” of UN Security Council resolutions.
The UN has recently imposed fresh sanctions on North Korea, citing its 2 September nuclear test as a “flagrant disregard” of its resolutions.
The UN Security Council’s new measures include limits on imports of crude oil, a ban on the sale of all natural gas liquids to North Korea, as well as on its exports of textiles and on new visas for North Korean overseas workers, a move which could see it lose two of its largest income sources – textile exports and overseas labourers.
“Given the persistent threat to international peace and stability posed by the DPRK, the Council adopted new EU autonomous measures to further increase the pressure on the DPRK to comply with its obligations. The measures complement and reinforce the UN Security Council sanctions,” the EU said.
– By Irene Madongo
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