CrisisWatch N°155


01 July 2016

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) 6 June reported DPRK’s Yongbyon nuclear facility appeared to be reactivated, with satellite imagery indicating resumption of activities related to five-megawatt reactor, expansion of enrichment facilities, activities related to reprocessing. IAEA chief said Pyongyang’s unwillingness to comply with March UNSC resolution “deeply regrettable”, urged implementation of relevant IAEA and UNSC resolutions; qualified that IAEA only observing through satellite imagery. U.S. State Dept official 7 June suggested Pyongyang repeating process by which it obtained plutonium for previous nuclear tests. DPRK 22 June launched two mid-range ballistic missiles from eastern coast; first launch failed, ROK media reported second launch likely most effective to date. UNSC 23 June condemned launches. U.S. Treasury Dept 1 June designated DPRK “primary” money launderer, said it would seek secondary sanctions cutting off banks or companies conducting transactions with Pyongyang from U.S. financial system; sanctions expected to primarily affect Chinese banks. Beijing said it opposed unilateral sanctions, 14 June released list of goods banned for export to DPRK. EU Council 6 June decided to impose additional restrictive measures against DPRK. ROK 13 June said DPRK hacked over 140,000 computers at 160 firms and govt agencies, planted code laying groundwork for major cyber-attack. Chinese President Xi 1 June received DPRK Worker’s Party Vice Chairman Ri Su-yong in first meeting with senior DPRK official since 2013. Ri same day said DPRK would continue to build nuclear force. DPRK convened fourth session of thirteenth Supreme People’s Assembly 29 June.