Are US Sanctions Affecting DPRK regime?

From Chosun Ilbo:

U.S. Treasury Department Under Secretary Stuart Levy said its ongoing financial sanctions against North Korea put “huge pressure” on the regime that could have a “snowballing … avalanche effect.  

Washington identified Macao-based Banco Delta Asia as Pyongyang’s “primary money-laundering concern” last September. since then the bank has folded.  According to Newsweek, “In today’s interconnected financial world, an official U.S. move to blacklist a foreign bank would be the kiss of death, since any financial institution doing business in dollars needs to hold accounts in correspondent U.S. banks in order to complete transactions.” Washington believes it has finally found a strategy that is putting real pressure on the regime — going after its sources of cash, all across the world.

Kim Jong il is reported to have told Chinese President Hu Jintao during a visit to China in January that his regime might collapse due to the U.S. crackdown on its financial transactions. [but this could be a bargaining chip to use aginast China…help us, or the US gets the peninsula].

“Numerous U.S. government agencies, including the FBI, Treasury, State Department and CIA, have been working for three years to curtail Pyongyang’s vast network of black-market activities” and “to cut off the financial conduits by which the proceeds are laundered.”

North Korea complains the sanctions imposed by the U.S. made its legitimate financial transactions impossible, and is boycotting six-party talks on its nuclear program as a result.


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