The United States on Thursday announced new sanctions on Russian and North Korean companies following the launch of Pyongyang’s intercontinental ballistic missile into Japan’s special economic zone.
The State Department said in a statement that the targets of the recent sanctions have been accused of “diverting important materials to North Korea’s missile program.” “These actions are part of our current efforts to advance the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) missile program and underscore Russia’s poor role on the world stage,” the statement continued.
North Korea on Thursday launched an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) into Japan’s special economic zone. South Korean President Moon Jae-in confirmed that the Pyongyang-launched missile into the Sea of Japan was in fact an ICBM. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has banned the launch of this type of missile since late 2017.
Sanctions were announced on Thursday against two Russian companies, Artis Group and PFK Proportshipnik, and Igor Alexandrovich Michurin. In North Korea, a citizen, Ri Chung Sol, and a company, the Foreign Office of the Second Academy of Natural Sciences were targeted. The State Department did not specify the alleged links between the two companies and the North Korean plan.
Resolutions have been violated
US Secretary of State Anthony Blinkan on Thursday evening stressed the need for an alliance between the two powers with South Korean Foreign Minister Chung Yu-yong. The two senior diplomats reaffirmed that the launch violated several UN Security Council resolutions and that “DPRK’s illegal weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs pose a threat to its neighbors and to the entire international community,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Nate Price said in a transcript of the call.
The Russian embassy has accused Washington of seeking to punish officials in Moscow, saying it “does not fit Washington’s vision”. “It is clear that the next anti-Russian sanctions are aimed at destroying the economy and undermining the internal political situation in our country,” Antonov said in a statement on the embassy’s Facebook page.
On March 11, Washington announced sanctions against two individuals and three Russian companies accused of supporting North Korea’s missile development program.
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