Singapore suspends trade ties with North Korea

A South Korean soldier talks with a surgeon at a hospital where a North Korean soldier who defected to the South after being shot and wounded by the North Korean military is hospitalized in Suwon South Korea

A South Korean soldier talks with a surgeon at a hospital where a North Korean soldier who defected to the South after being shot and wounded by the North Korean military is hospitalized in Suwon South Korea

The Singapore customs authority informed trading companies in a notice on November 7 that the city state would halt all trade activities with the North the following day.

Radio Free Asia reported that the Singaporean government recently enforced a ban on commercial exchanges with North Korea on all trading companies and intermediaries. Offenders may be fined or jailed for up to two years.

North Korea has launched a total of 19 missiles from February to September in defiance of United Nations sanctions.

Singapore was its eighth biggest trading partner in 2016, but that only made up 0.2% of the North's trade. The Philippines said in September it has suspended trade with North Korea to comply with sanctions.

U.S. President Donald Trump issued an executive order 10 days later penalizing any company or person doing business with North Korea by cutting off their access to the U.S. financial system, freezing their assets or both.

Tension in the Korean peninsula reached unprecedented levels earlier this year after Pyongyang's repeated missile tests, including two long range missiles that flew over Japan, and its sixth and biggest nuclear test.

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