China Orders North Korean Businesses Closed by January

Military vehicles carry missiles with characters reading 'Pukkuksong' during a military parade marking the 105th birth anniversary of country's founding father, Kim Il Sung in Pyongyang, April 15, 2017.  REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Military vehicles carry missiles with characters reading 'Pukkuksong' during a military parade marking the 105th birth anniversary of country's founding father, Kim Il Sung in Pyongyang, April 15, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
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China Orders North Korean Businesses Closed by January

Military vehicles carry missiles with characters reading 'Pukkuksong' during a military parade marking the 105th birth anniversary of country's founding father, Kim Il Sung in Pyongyang, April 15, 2017.  REUTERS/Damir Sagolj
Military vehicles carry missiles with characters reading 'Pukkuksong' during a military parade marking the 105th birth anniversary of country's founding father, Kim Il Sung in Pyongyang, April 15, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj

China on Thursday ordered North Korean-owned businesses to shut down by January, cutting foreign revenue for the isolated North under UN sanctions imposed over its nuclear and missile programs.

North Korean businesses and ventures with Chinese partners must close within 120 days of the Sept. 11 approval of the latest sanctions, according to the Ministry of Commerce. That would be early January.

China is North Korea's main trading partner, making Beijing's cooperation essential to the success of sanctions imposed in an effort to top the North's pursuit of weapons technology. China has long been North Korea's diplomatic protector but has gone along with the latest penalties out of growing frustration with leader Kim Jong Un's government.

The latest round of sanctions approved by the UN Security Council ban member countries from operating joint ventures with North Korea.

The sanctions also ban sales of natural gas to North Korea and purchases of the North's textile exports, another key revenue source. They order other nations to limit fuel supplies to the North.

North Korean companies operate restaurants, trading outfits and other ventures in China, helping to provide the North with foreign currency.

China, which provides the bulk of North Korea's energy supplies, announced Saturday it would cut off gas and limit shipments of refined petroleum products, effective Jan. 1. It made no mention of crude, which makes up the bulk of Chinese energy supplies to North Korea and is not covered by the UN sanctions.

China also has banned imports of North Korean coal, iron and lead ore, and seafood since early September.

On Thursday, the Ministry of Commerce defended its recent imports of North Korean coal as permitted by UN sanctions.

A ministry spokesman, Gao Feng, said imports that were reported in August trade data were allowed by a "grace period" for goods that arrived before the UN ban took effect.

The imports are "in line with the (UN) resolution," Gao said.



Man Arrested after British Soldier Stabbed in Attack Near Barracks

FILE - A sign stands in front of the New Scotland Yard, the headquarters of the London Metropolitan Police, in London, Monday, Sept. 25, 2023. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)
FILE - A sign stands in front of the New Scotland Yard, the headquarters of the London Metropolitan Police, in London, Monday, Sept. 25, 2023. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)
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Man Arrested after British Soldier Stabbed in Attack Near Barracks

FILE - A sign stands in front of the New Scotland Yard, the headquarters of the London Metropolitan Police, in London, Monday, Sept. 25, 2023. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)
FILE - A sign stands in front of the New Scotland Yard, the headquarters of the London Metropolitan Police, in London, Monday, Sept. 25, 2023. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)

A 24-year-old man was arrested after a soldier was stabbed and seriously injured in a street near a barracks in southeast England, police said Wednesday.
The British Army said the victim, who is in his 40s, suffered serious injuries. He was airlifted to a hospital for treatment.
The Kent Police force said officers were called Tuesday evening to reports of an assault in the town of Gillingham, 30 miles (about 50 kilometers) southeast of London.
A suspect was arrested within half an hour, police said. British police do not name suspects until they have been charged. There was no immediate word on motive.
The road where police said the attack happened is close to Brompton Barracks, the headquarters of the British Army’s 1 Royal School of Military Engineering Regiment. The army did not confirm media reports that the soldier was in uniform at the time of the attack.
“Our thoughts are with the soldier and their family and we request that their privacy is respected at this difficult time," the army said in a statement. “We will continue to work closely with Kent Police to understand what happened and support the investigation."