WW3 FEARS INTENSIFY: Trump slaps North Korea with fresh sanctions in bid to crush Kim

The new sanctions are aimed at hurting trade between China and North Korea in a bid to pressure Pyongyang to back away from its ambition to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting the US mainland. 

It comes after Mr Trump turned the heat on despot dictator Kim by declaring the secretive state as a “ state sponsor of terror”. 

Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin, said: “As North Korea continues to threaten international peace and security, we are steadfast in our determination to maximise economic pressure to isolate it from outside sources of trade and revenue while exposing its evasive tactics.

“These designations include companies that have engaged in trade with North Korea cumulatively worth hundreds of millions of dollars. 

“We are also sanctioning the shipping and transportation companies, and their vessels, that facilitate North Korea’s trade and its deceptive manoeuvres.”

The North is already subject to a raft of sanctions from the US, UN and the European Union. 

The depraved regime’s aggressive rhetoric against the US and its allies has sparked fears of World War 3 across the globe.

Over the summer, Pyongyang undertook several missile tests and repeatedly threatened the US territory of Guam and Japan.

The US imposed sanctions against 13 Chinese and North Korean organisations Washington accused of helping evade nuclear restrictions against Pyongyang and supporting the country through trade.

The sanctions included blacklisting three Chinese companies, Dandong Kehua Economy & Trade Co., Dandong Xianghe Trading Co., and Dandong Hongda Trade Co., which the Treasury Department said have done more than $750 million in combined trade with North Korea.

The new sanctions also hit several North Korean companies that send workers to countries such as Russia, Poland, Cambodia and China as US authorities aim to to cut off the money North Korea makes from the export of labour.

The sanctions also blacklisted Sun Sidong and his company Dandong Dongyuan Industrial Co.

In a June report, Washington think tank C4ADS said Sun Sidong’s firm was part of an interconnected network of Chinese companies that account for the vast proportion of trade with North Korea.

Along with targeting sources of weapons technology, the new sanctions marked the first time the United States sought to directly attack North Korea’s everyday consumer trade. 

Peter Harrell, a sanctions expert at the Centre for a New American Security, said: “What you are seeing here is we are sanctioning companies involved in ordinary trade. 

“That’s the logical next step of the pressure campaign.”