Louis Charbonneau and Michelle Nichols
May 15, 2013
Increasingly tough financial sanctions, an arms embargo and other international restrictions on trade with North Korea have significantly delayed expansion of Pyongyang’s illicit nuclear arms program, according to a confidential report by a U.N. panel of experts seen by Reuters on Tuesday.
The latest annual report by the U.N. sanctions-monitoring group comes as the United States seeks to convince China that applying economic and other sanctions against its neighbor is crucial to halting the program.
“While the imposition of sanctions has not halted the development of nuclear and ballistic missile programs, it has in all likelihood considerably delayed (North Korea’s) timetable and, through the imposition of financial sanctions and the bans on the trade in weapons, has choked off significant funding which would have been channeled into its prohibited activities,” the group said in a 52-page report.
The document covers the period up through last month, diplomats said, so it was too early to measure the effect the latest round of U.N. sanctions adopted in March.