Japan to extend sanctions on North Korea
Apr 10,2008 00:00 by UPI
TOKYO -- Japan's governing party has endorsed the government's plan to extend some Japanese sanctions on North Korea for another six months.

Government officials said the cabinet is expected to formalize the extension Friday, Kyodo reported Thursday.

In endorsing the extension until mid-October, the Liberal Democratic Party cited a lack of a breakthrough regarding North Korea's nuclear program and its kidnapping of Japanese citizens in the 1970s and 1980s.

The sanctions include a ban on port calls by North Korean-registered ships, all imports from North Korea and entry to North Korean nationals except for pro-Pyongyang residents of Japan.

Separate from the sanctions, Japan banned exports of 24 items including luxury foods to North Korea in line with a U.N. resolution and barred payments to 15 entities and one individual linked to North Korea's missile and weapons programs.

The dispute over North Korea's abductions of at least 17 Japanese citizens has been a diplomatic issue and an barrier to normalization of ties between the countries.

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