Japan imposes unilateral sanctions on 8 foreign entities over North Korea

Japan imposes unilateral sanctions on 8 foreign entities over North Korea

Japan announced Friday that it will impose unilateral sanctions on eight foreign firms and individuals as punishment for their alleged dealings with North Korea.

The sanctions are among the latest international efforts to isolate the country and follow sanctions imposed by the United Nations Security Council earlier this month.

North Korea drew a swift rebuke from the international community after successfully testing two intercontinental missiles in July, which experts say may eventually be able to deliver a nuclear warhead to the US mainland.

Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Friday, “it is extremely important to keep pressuring North Korea in coordination with US, South Korea and other countries.”

Adding, “we would like to strongly urge North Korea to take concrete action towards denuclearization.”

Chinese, Namibian firms targeted

The new Japanese sanctions target six companies — four from China and two from Namibia — and one Chinese individual and another of an unknown nationality had their Japanese assets frozen.

Tokyo has now sanctioned 72 organizations and 81 individuals for their dealings with North Korea.

These so-called “secondary sanctions,” punishing those who do business with North Korea, come on the heels of similar measures levied by the US Treasury Department against Russian and Chinese entities for their dealings with North Korea on Wednesday.

The United States has hoped to marshal a global coalition to isolate North Korea as part of its so-called “peaceful pressure” campaign. The hope is to put enough diplomatic and financial pressure on North Korea to bring it to the negotiating table.

Some illicit finance experts argue secondary sanctions are necessary in order to truly isolate North Korea and hinder its ability to bring in revenue.

North Korea uses the money for a host of purposes, from funding the lavish lifestyles of the country’s elites to its weapons programs.

Accelerating missile program

The North Korean missile program in particular has been moving ahead at a rapid pace.

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