Author: Rohan Malpure Date: 7/2/17
China has responded angrily to a new U.S. sanction on a Chinese bank that was accused of laundering North Korean money. A spokesman for the foreign ministry asked the U.S. to “stop wrongful actions” to avoid harming cooperation.
The U.S. announced the sanctions, which were also imposed on a Chinese shipping company and two Chinese nationals, on Thursday. It said the blacklisting was aimed at cutting funds to North Korea’s weapons programs. “We will follow the money and cut off the money,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnunchin at a news conference.
Mnunchin also said the move was not because of China’s inaction on North Korea. He said “this is not directed at China, this is directed at a bank, as well as individuals and entities in China.”
China also denounced the U.S. sale of weapons to Taiwan, which the U.S. recently announced. The Chinese said they viewed it as a slap at Beijing’s sovereignty.
When the U.S. opened up diplomatic relations with the Chinese in 1979, it severed its formal ties with Taiwan. Under the one-China policy, Washington acknowledges China’s position that there is only one Chinese government but does not endorse it and maintains an unofficial relationship with Taiwan.
The two Chinese nationals upon whom sanctions were imposed are Chinese business executives. They were accused by the U.S. of establishing and running front companies for the North Koreans. Along with Dalian Global Unity Shipping, they allegedly transported 700,000 tons of freight annually between China and North Korea.
The arms sale is worth $1.4 billion and includes anti-radiation missiles, technical support for early-warning radar, and components for a surface-to-air defense system.
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