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President Trump announces ‘heaviest sanctions ever imposed’ against North Korea

President Donald Trump announced tough new sanctions against North Korea. It's the latest in a series of sanctions to block revenue and fuel used for North Korea leader Kim Jong Un's nuclear program. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Jana J. Pruet

President Donald Trump announced Friday new sanctions against North Korea aimed at further isolating Kim Jong Un’s regime in efforts to convince the communist leader to denuclearize.

“We imposed today the heaviest sanctions ever imposed on a country before,” Trump said during his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference. “Hopefully, something positive can happen.”

It’s the latest in a series of sanctions to block revenue and fuel used for Kim’s nuclear program.

“Today’s action targets one individual, 27 entities, and 28 vessels located, registered, or flagged in North Korea, China, Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Marshall Islands, Tanzania, Panama, and Comoros,” the Treasury Department said in a statement.

The Treasury Department also issued an advisory warning of sanctions risks against any country that enables shipments to or from Pyongyang, North Korea.

“Treasury is aggressively targeting all illicit avenues used by North Korea to evade sanctions, including taking decisive action to block the vessels, shipping companies, and entities across the globe that work on North Korea’s behalf. This will significantly hinder the Kim regime’s capacity to conduct evasive maritime activities that facilitate illicit coal and fuel transports, and erode its abilities to ship goods through international waters,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in the statement. “The President has made it clear to companies worldwide that if they choose to help fund North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, they will not do business with the United States.”

The U.S.-led efforts persuaded the United Nations to impose its strongest sanctions to date against the communist leader’s regime last September.