Vastavam web: The United Nations Security Council blacklisted dozens of ships and shipping companies on Friday over oil and coal smuggling by North Korea, boosting pressure on Pyongyang as leader Kim Jong Un plans to meet with his South Korean and U.S. counterparts.The council’s North Korea sanctions committee acted on a request by the United States, designating 21 shipping companies — including five based in China — 15 North Korean ships, 12 non-North Korean ships and a Taiwanese man.
While Trump has agreed to meet Kim, he tweeted on Wednesday that “maximum sanctions and pressure must be maintained.”Tension over North Korea’s tests of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles surged last year and raised fears of U.S. military action in response to the North’s threat to develop a nuclear weapon capable of hitting the U.S. mainland.U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said the U.N. sanctions designations — the largest agreed by the council’s committee — were aimed at shutting down North Korea’s illegal smuggling activities to obtain oil and sell coal.
“The approval of this historic sanctions package is a clear sign that the international community is united in our efforts to keep up maximum pressure on the North Korean regime,” she said in a statement.Washington then proposed a shortened list on Thursday, which was unanimously agreed by the committee on Friday.
The 12 non-North Korea ships are now subjected to a global port ban and must be deregistered, while the 15 North Korean ships are subjected to an asset freeze and 13 of those a global port ban.The assets of the 21 shipping companies, which include businesses based in the Marshall Islands, Singapore, Panama and Samoa, must now be frozen.