Friday, November 03, 2006

NK, 6 party talks, money laundering, counterfeiting

Kim Jong Il has been busy recently. He is trying to convince the USA to remove the sanctions already. It appears the freezing of his accounts in the Macau bank, Banco Delta Asia, was being used to launder counterfeit USA dollars, Euros, and other countries currency.

Apparently the Kim Jong Il's accounts were frozen for a few months (don't know exactly how long), and the USA is still trying to get other countries to conform to the sanctions to which they agreed.
The North's Foreign Ministry make only indirect mention of its headline-grabbing atomic test last month, saying in a statement that it hoped to resolve US financial restrictions by going back to six-nation arms talks that it has boycotted for a year.

Confirming US and Chinese reports of the agreement Tuesday, the North's Foreign Ministry said Pyongyang decided to return to the arms talks "on the premise that the issue of lifting financial sanctions will be discussed and settled between the (North) and the US within the framework of the six-party talks."

Washington had banned transactions between American financial institutions and Banco Delta Asia SARL - a bank in the Chinese territory of Macau - saying it was being used by North Korea for money-laundering. [China Daily]
There was another mixed message at the Administration. While here in the States we declared there would be no talks about lifting santions, the ambassador to North Korea hinted that it would be on the table. (One question. Why?)

North Korea is not alone by any means in this counterfeiting ring. China is not innocent in these affairs, as we have known for a long time.
When it comes to North Korea, the United States has concerns about more than just nuclear weapons. For over 25 years, Pyongyang’s state-supervised currency printing plants have been churning out high-grade counterfeit U.S. dollars as well as counterfeit Japanese yen, Thai baht, and in recent years, euros. A more recent concern is the increasing evidence that China has not been an innocent bystander in North Korea’s traffic in bogus bills. [BBC.co.uk]
The talks should be held by December, as soon as everyone can rearrange their schedules. This is going to be interesting, so stay tuned.

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