The European Union has strengthened its punitive measures against North Korea by bringing its regulations in line with sanctions approved by the United Nations Security Council in August.
The move announced by EU headquarters Thursday follows the Security Council resolution of Aug. 5, which bans North Korea from exporting coal, iron, lead and seafood products estimated to be worth over $1 billion.
The aim is to pressure the regime of Kim Jong Un and deprive it of hard currencies needed to develop nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles.
The U.N. resolution also bans countries from giving additional work permits to North Korean laborers, another source of money for Pyongyang.
A few hundred North Koreans now work in the EU, many of them in Poland.