The United States announced sanctions on Tuesday on Chinese and Russian companies and individuals for supporting North Korean weapons programs, including by dealing in Pyongyang’s energy trade and helping sanctioned North Korean entities gain access to the U.S. and international finance system, according to Business Insider.
The Treasury Department imposed sanctions on the companies, which are based in China, Russia and Singapore, as well as the head of the Russian firm, that block any assets they may have in U.S. jurisdictions and bar Americans from doing business with them.
“Treasury will continue to implement existing sanctions on North Korea, and will take action to block and designate companies, ports and vessels that facilitate illicit shipments and provide revenue streams to the DPRK. Consequences for violating these sanctions will remain in place until we have achieved the final, fully verified denuclearization of North Korea.”~ Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin
— Treasury Department (@USTreasury) August 15, 2018
Two months since the Trump-Kim summit, there has been no visible evidence of any progress on denuclearization, in fact satellite images have shown that North Korea has continued to progress their nuclear facilities. While the North has maintained its stance that they have halted nuclear and missile tests, and has made some goodwill gestures — returning the suspected remains of American soldiers killed during the Korean War and dismantling some parts of a missile engine facility — it has yet to roll back its nuclear weapons program.
The Trump administration has presented North Korea with a formal timeline for starting the process of denuclearization — and Pyongyang has rejected it several times. It shows that even after months of talks, Washington and Pyongyang have made little progress toward ending the North Korean nuclear threat.
The details of the US-proposed timeline, which have not previously been reported, are as follows: North Korea hands over 60 to 70 percent of its nuclear warheads within six to eight months; the US or a third party — likely another country — takes possession of them and removes them from North Korea. It’s unclear what concessions, if any, the US would offer in exchange beyond sanctions relief or removing North Korea from the state sponsors of terrorism list. You can read the full article of the time line intel here.
Chris “Badger” Thomas is a Veteran who served our country as an Army Combat Medic.