U.S. President Barack Obama signed an executive order on Tuesday clearing the way for sanctions against a broad array of foreign businesses operating on behalf of or within North Korea. The order, published Wednesday, permits the U.S. Treasury Department to impose blocking restrictions against assets controlled by foreign companies and individuals involved in "any" industry in the communist nation, as well as against entities that directly or indirectly purchase or supply metal, graphite, coal or software linked to North Korea's government. The measure also bars U.S. financial institutions from facilitating or guaranteeing any transaction between foreign companies and North Korea...
U.S. lawmakers are considering drafting new legislation that would mandate a ban on Chinese financial institutions with ties to blacklisted entities in North Korea ahead of the country's expected test of an intercontinental ballistic missile.
The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday forwarded legislation to the Senate targeting North Korea's access to currency and foreign exchange services in response to the country's latest test of a nuclear weapon.
The Obama administration is working to cut off North Korea's remaining access points to the global financial system, including through China, a U.S. Treasury Department official told lawmakers Tuesday.
The United Nations Security Council Friday unanimously approved strengthening trade and economic sanctions against North Korea, including the reinstitution of financial freezes passed but not acted on in 2006.