Kuwait sanctions North Korea but ministries confused on how

Kuwait sanctions North Korea but ministries confused on how
Kuwait's foreign ministry says the country will stop issuing working visas to North Koreans, something the information ministry has denied.
2 min read
11 August, 2017
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un [Getty]
Kuwait's foreign ministry says it has begun implementing sanctions against North Korea, including stopping direct flights to and from Pyongyang, according to state news agency KUNA.

An official source from the foreign ministry source said on Thursday the measures included ending entrance visas for North Korean workers and no longer issuing commercial licenses.

The official also said that Kuwait will downgrade relations with North Korea, blocking loans from the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) to the country, along with blocking all forms of freight shipping.

But in a statement given to AFP, Kuwait’s information ministry has denied foreign ministry actions against foreign workers and says the country has no plans to expel North Korean workers, nor has it stopped issuing working visas to North Korean workers.

Most North Korean workers in the Gulf Arab countries earn around $1,000 a month, half of which is kept by the North Korean government and another $300 going toward construction company managers, the officials said.

This leaves workers receiving $200 for working straight through an entire month, they said.

Kuwait's measures follow US President Donald Trump’s threats to North Korea on Thursday.

Trump said Pyongyang should be "very, very nervous" if it even considers attacking the United States or its allies, after North Korea said it was planning to fire missiles over Japan to land near the US Pacific territory of Guam.

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) imposed a new set of sanctions on Pyongyang that has the potential to reduce North Korea’s $3 billion annual export revenue by a third.

The Kuwaiti foreign ministry confirmed that “Kuwait will continue working with the competent UN bodies and international partners to keep them apprised of the measures its takes in this regard which gained international appraisal”.