US cuts off Chinese bank over North Korea ties

Washington: The United States excluded China’s Bank of Dandong from its financial system, alleging that it has helped North Korea evade financial sanctions to launder funds. Washington had alerted other businesses in June that it planned to take the action, but it finally went into effect just as US President Donald Trump was to set off on an Asian tour.
The US leader has demanded that Beijing do more to push its neighbour North Korea to stop efforts to build a nuclear-armed missile capable of reaching American cities.
Trump will bring this message to President Xi Jinping in Beijing next week, but China is reluctant to push sanctions so far as to destabilize Kim Jong-Un’s North Korean regime.
Officials in Washington warn that, while they would prefer Kim to come to the table, Trump has not ruled out a pre-emptive strike to prevent him from crossing the missile threshold.
But, alongside this saber rattling, Washington is also slowly stepping up secondary sanctions on foreign institutions like the Bank of Dandong it accuses of funnelling illicit funds. — AFP