WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) voted to expand and tighten sanctions to limit North Korea’s nuclear capabilities, combat cyber activities and address the country’s human rights violations today. Earlier this afternoon, Senator Capito spoke on the Senate Floor in favor of the North Korea Sanctions and Policy Enhancement Act of 2016, which passed the Senate on a 96-0 vote:
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“A rogue regime with nuclear weapons, North Korea poses a very serious threat to the United States.
“Last month, the North Koreans tested a nuclear device as they continue to advance their weapons technology.
“Just this weekend, the North Koreans launched a satellite as they work to build a ballistic missile program.
“Cyberattacks launched from North Korea have crippled businesses like Sony Pictures and targeted our allies in South Korea and Japan.
“The threats posed by North Korea will only continue to grow.
“And our current policy towards North Korea has failed to protect the safety and security of the American people.
“This legislation takes significant steps to deny North Korea’s capabilities, limit the nuclear and ballistic missile programs, stop cyberattacks, and end North Korea’s horrendous human rights violations.
“Mandatory investigations and mandatory sanctions are the hallmarks of this legislation.
“Under this bill, the administration is required to investigate the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, human rights abuses and cybercrimes.
“When investigations reveal misconduct related to these activities, sanctions are required.
“Importantly, this bill will target minerals and other items that the North Korean regime uses to finance its weapons programs at the expense of its own people.
“Sanctions under this bill would also apply to businesses or individuals around the world who help North Korea expand its nuclear weapons and cybercrime capabilities.
“Similar legislation imposing sanctions targeting North Korea passed in the House last month on a nearly unanimous vote.
“Today, I hope that we pass this bill by a similar margin.
“And show that the Senate is united in our resolve against the security threats posed by North Korea.”