Sri Lanka imposes tough economic sanctions on nuclear North Korea
The Government this week issued regulations imposing sanctions on the Democratic People’s republic of North Korea (DPRK or North Korea) in keeping with United Nations Security Council Resolutions dealing with the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.
The regulations were issued by Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana on Friday.
The sanctions are in keeping with Sri Lanka’s obligation imposed upon member states of the United Nations to apply sanction measures in relation to North Korea until the country suspends all activities related to its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes and abandon all nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programmes which constitute a threat to international peace and security.
Even though Sri Lanka and North Korea have had diplomatic links since 1970, both countries do not maintain resident missions.
Under the terms of the regulations, the Foreign Minister will appoint a competent authority in consultation with the Defence Minister to ensure that the sanctions are imposed.
The regulations prohibit Sri Lankans here and abroad from providing or receiving assets, financial services, technical training, advice, services or assistance related to the provision, manufacture, production, possession, acquisition maintenance, stockpiling, storage, transportation, transfer or use of any items related to the nuclear programme to any person in North Korea.
They also prohibit providing of bunkering services, supplies, servicing, leasing or chartering of vessels or crew services of vessels to North Korea.
North Korean financial institutions will not be allowed to open new branches, subsidiaries or representative offices in Sri Lanka. The competent authority appointed to ensure the regulations are implemented will have the authority to recommend to the Government the expulsion of North Korean diplomats;
its government representatives, other North Korean nationals acting in a governmental or representative of fice capacity; foreign nationals who are working on behalf or at the direction of North Korea and other connected to North Korea.
The competent authority will also exercise enhanced vigilance over North Korean diplomatic personnel here so as to prevent such individuals from contributing to or generating revenue to North Korea's prohibited programmes or activities, or to the evasion of sanctions. It could also freeze immediately the funds, other financial assets and economic resources in Sri Lanka, if these are owned or controlled directly or indirectly by a person or entity blacklisted by the United Nations Security Council.
The competent authority will also have the power to freeze funds, other financial assets and economic resources in Sri Lanka of entities of the Government of North Korea and the Korean Workers Party if it is determined to be associated with the prohibited activities.
In addition to these regulations, the Government also issued other regulations cited as the United Nations ( Sanctions re l ating to Proliferation of Nuclear, Chemical or Biological Weapons) Regulations of 2017.
These regulations are part of the domestic controls that UN member states have to impose to prevent the proliferation of these weapons and means of delivery, including by establishing appropriate controls over related materials.
The regulations prohibits the manufacture, acquiring possession, development, transport, transfer or uses nuclear, chemical or biological weapons and their means of delivery within Sri Lanka.
Those who, for the peaceful purposes, deal with nuclear chemical and biological weapon related materials are required to comply with and maintain the minimum accounting, and securing measures in production, use, storage and transport and minimum physical protection measures in accordance with the relevant written law.
Those who engage in export, transit, transshipment or re- export nuclear chemical and biological weapon related materials within Sri Lanka for peaceful purposes will be required to comply with the relevant written law.
Those who commit offences under these regulations are liable to face imprisonment of up to 25 years or a fine not exceeding five million rupees or both upon conviction by the High Court.