In late May, North Korea test-fired three ballistic missiles, for a total of 23 so far this year. This is yet another step in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, or DPRK’s on-going development of its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs, which fly in the face of multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions, said Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a written statement.
The DPRK’s continued pursuit of weapons of mass destruction, or WMD, and ballistic missile programs pose a threat to international peace and security.
Therefore, on May 27, the United States Department of the Treasury imposed sanctions on one individual, one trading company and two Russian banks for facilitating the DPRK’s ability to continue the development of its WMD, ballistic missile, and military programs.
Jong Yong Nam is a representative in Minsk, Belarus, of a subsidiary of the DPRK’s Second Academy of Natural Sciences, or SANS. SANS, which is responsible for research and development of the DPRK’s advanced weapons systems, was designated by the U.S. State Department in 2010 and by the United Nations in 2013.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury also designated the Air Koryo Trading Corporation, Bank Sputnik, and Far Eastern Bank. Through Air Koryo Trading Corporation, the U.S.-designated DPRK Ministry of Rocket Industry has sought to acquire various electrical components and dual-use goods.
Bank Sputnik has assisted the UN- and U.S.-designated DPRK Foreign Trade Bank with the facilitation of a payment for the use of Russian satellite services. It also holds a Russian ruble account for a U.S.-designated Foreign Trade Bank front company, Korea Ungum Corporation. Far Eastern Bank has provided banking services on behalf of the U.S.-designated national airline of the DPRK, Air Koryo, and other DPRK government organizations.
These sanctions freeze any assets that these entities and individuals may have under U.S. jurisdictions, and bar Americans from doing business with them.
“[The Department of the] Treasury is targeting supporters of the DPRK’s WMD and ballistic missile programs, as well as foreign financial institutions that have knowingly provided significant financial services to the DPRK government,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. “The United States will continue to implement and enforce existing sanctions while urging the DPRK to return to a diplomatic path and abandon its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles.”