United Nations sanctions banning the import of North Korean seafood started to bite on Wednesday, two days after China's Commerce Ministry announced it would enforce the new rules passed by the United Nations Security Council as punishment for the North's nuclear and missile tests.
The crackdown came as President Trump offered some rare words of praise for North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un, making an apparent reference to the country's decision to wait “a little more” before acting on plans to launch ballistic missiles toward Guam, an American territory.
The Trump administration had been pushing China to tighten its enforcement of the United Nations sanctions, and North Korea’s export of seafood is a decent, if not spectacular, source of cash for its government.
By curtailing the trade, China, which has been criticized for not properly enforcing earlier sanctions, is obeying the intent of the latest sanctions resolution but harming its own businessmen.
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