Nikki Haley accuses Russia of violating sanctions with North Korean work permits
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Friday accused Russia of violating international sanctions by continuing to issue permits for North Korean citizens to work in Russia.
Haley cited “credible reports” of Russia violating U.N. Security Council resolutions on North Korean laborers as the latest evidence of Moscow easing up on sanctions imposed last year in an effort to rein in Pyongyang’s nuclear program.
“Talk is cheap — Russia cannot support sanctions with their words in the Security Council only to violate them with their actions,” Haley said in a statement. “Until we see the final, fully verified denuclearization of North Korea there can be no easing of sanctions.”
Sanctions imposed by the Security Council, which includes Russia, in December stated that all North Korean citizens working abroad would return home within 24 months.
The measures were aimed at significantly impacting North Korea’s economy and blocking around 90 percent of the country’s petroleum exports.
However, according to a Wall Street Journal report this week, at least 700 new work permits were issued to North Koreans in Russia this year.
Further sanctions from the U.S. were put on pause in May ahead of a historic summit between President Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, which led to an agreement between the two leaders calling for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.
The Trump administration has stated that sanctions on North Korea will remain in place until denuclearization is completed and verified.