US sanctions five North Koreans after missile launch

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The US imposed sanctions Wednesday on five North Koreans linked to the country's ballistic missile program, a day after Pyongyang carried out what it said was the launch of a hypersonic missile.

The Treasury Department said the five individuals being sanctioned were “responsible for procuring goods for (North Korea's) weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile-related programs.”

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“Today's actions, part of the US ongoing efforts to counter (North Korea's) weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs, target its continued use of overseas representatives to illegally procure goods for weapons,” Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson said in a statement.

“(North Korea's) latest missile launches are further evidence that it continues to advance prohibited programs despite the international community's calls for diplomacy and denuclearization,” Nelson said.

North Korean state media reported on Wednesday that the country's leader, Kim Jong Un, personally oversaw the successful test of the hypersonic missile, the second such launch by the nuclear-armed nation in less than a week.

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