January 13, 2022

Missile Launch! America Blocks 5 North Korean Officials

 The U.S. Treasury Department dropped sanctions on five North Korean officials allegedly involved with the acquisition of assets for Pyongyang’s ballistic missile program.

The sanctions were lifted following the launch of a ballistic missile by North Korea that reportedly crashed in the Sea of ​​Japan on Tuesday prompting criticism from the U.S. and its allies.

According to a statement issued by the Treasury Department, the sanctions were in response to at least six ballistic missile launches carried out by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) since September 2021.

The move is part of the US's ongoing efforts to combat weapons of mass destruction and the DPRK's ballistic missile program, which uses foreign representatives to obtain goods for weapons illegally.

Russia -based Choe Myong Hyon, allegedly provided or attempted to provide goods or services to support the Second Academy of Natural Sciences (SANS), which was under U.S. sanctions in 2010 for supporting North Korea’s missile program.

The other four individuals are North Koreans based in China, representing SANS's subordinate organizations, according to the U.S. Treasury Department. Sim Kwang Sok, Kim Song Hun, Kang Chol Jak and Pyon Kwan Chol were banned for obtaining different materials related to the production of missiles.

The implications of sanctions include restricting any interest or property held in the U.S. and generally prohibiting any American from conducting transactions with blacklisted individuals, and discouraging engaging in financial dealings.