President signs Gardner’s North Korea sanctions bill into law

President Barack Obama signed a North Korea sanctions bill into law on Thursday that was authored by U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO).

The bipartisan North Korea Sanctions Policy and Enhancement Act imposes mandatory sanctions on individuals who contribute to North Korea’s nuclear proliferation, cyber attacks, censorship and human rights abuses.

“The president’s signing of my North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act represents a major shift in U.S. policy toward North Korea,” Gardner, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy, said.

Gardner has been leading congressional efforts to curb North Korea’s nuclear proliferation and human rights abuses for nearly a year.

In April, Gardner urged the Obama administration to act following reports that North Korea was expanding its nuclear stockpile. In May, he introduced a resolution calling for sanctions in response to human rights abuses, military threats and violations of international laws. In October, Gardner chaired a Senat Foreign Relations Committee hearing on North Korea and the Obama administration’s policies.

“(The bill’s signing) is the Obama administration’s recognition that their strategic patience policy has failed and we need a new direction to stop North Korea’s increasing belligerence,” Gardner said. “My bill provides that new policy of strength, and I’m proud that Congress put politics aside and came together to approve mandatory sanctions designed to stop the Forgotten Maniac in Pyongyang. Today, we’ve given our allies a reason to trust us, and our enemies a reason to fear us.”

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