How effective do you think that these United Kingdom Government imposed trade sanctions will be in thwarting the evil North Korean dictatorship from its nuclear weapons threats and in undermining the police state which keeps it in power through fear and repression and propaganda ?
Ooops! These trade sanctions outlined in this Statutory Instrument do not apply to the mainland United Kingdom, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man, the Governments of which are only mentioned as ones to which information about the sanctions etc. may be disclosed.
Despite the Order applying to British Overseas Territories, Gibraltar also seems to have been missed out. Has the UK Government given up sovereignty over Gibraltar with respect to trade sanctions ? If so, why ?
SCHEDULE 1 Article 1(2)
TERRITORIES TO WHICH THIS ORDER EXTENDS
British Antarctic Territory
British Indian Ocean Territory
Pitcairn, Henderson, Ducie and Oeno Islands
St. Helena and Dependencies
South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
The Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia in the Island of Cyprus
Turks and Caicos Islands
Resolution 1718 (2006), Adopted by the Security Council at its 5551st meeting, on 14 October 2006 (.pdf) is the legal basis on which these sanctions against North Korea are being imposed and it certainly also should apply to the mainland United Kingdom as well.
Is there Yet Another sanctions Order in the pipeline ? Why could the United Kingdom and all the British Overseas territories etc. not have been included in the one Order ? Why all the extra bureaucratic red tape ?
Obviously prohibited military or nuclear items or technologies have been under trade sanctions against North Korea for many years.
However, how exactly will prohibiting the export of the following list of "luxury" or "high-quality" or "high end" (all terms which are undefined) goods make any difference whatsoever ?
SCHEDULE 4 Article 2
Prohibited luxury goods referred to in Article 2
1. Pure bred horses
All other animals and pets are not restricted ?
2. Caviar and caviar substitutes
3. Truffles and preparations thereof
4. High-quality wines (including sparkling wines), spirits and spirituous beverages
5. High-quality cigars and cigarillos
Cigarettes are not restricted ?
6. Luxury perfumes, toilet waters and cosmetics, including beauty and make-up products
7. High-quality leather, saddlery and travel goods, hand bags and similar articles
8. High-quality garments, clothing accessories and shoes (regardless of their material)
9. Hand knotted carpets, hand-woven rugs and tapestries
10. Pearls, precious and semi-precious stones, articles of pearls, jewellery, gold- or silversmith articles
11. Coins and banknotes, not being legal tender
12. Cutlery of precious metal or plated or clad with precious metal
13. High-quality tableware of porcelain, china, stone- or earthenware or fine pottery
14. High quality lead crystal glassware
15. High-end electronic items for domestic use
16. High-end electrical/electronic or optical apparatus for recording and reproducing sound and images
17. Luxury vehicles for the transport of persons on earth, air or sea, as well as their accessories and spare parts
18. Luxury clocks and watches and their parts
19. High-quality musical instruments
20. Works of art, collectors' pieces and antiques
21. Articles and equipment for skiing, golf, diving and water sports
22. Articles and equipment for billiard, automatic bowling, casino games and games operated by coins or banknotes
This all may seem farcical, but it represents another layer of bureaucratic red tape, with criminal offences of up to seven years imprisonment which apply to
(a) a British citizen, a British overseas territories citizen, a British Overseas citizen, a British subject, a British National (Overseas) or a British protected person and is ordinarily resident in the Territory; or
(b) a body incorporated or constituted under the law of any part of the Territory.
Even if you plead genuine ignorance that you did not know that the bottle of beer or the "pure bred horse" or other "luxury goods" you are involved in exporting were really destined for North Korea, you can still be arrested on suspicion of sanctions busting.
Incredibly and illogically, trading in luxury goods, attracts exactly the same maximum criminal penalty of up to 7 years in prison, under this Order, as does the, in our view far more serious, offences of the "Procurement of restricted goods from North Korea" i.e. a "nuclear weapon, ballistic missile and other weapons of mass destruction" !
What are Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown and Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett playing at with this badly draughted "lip service" trade sanctions Order in Council, which has not been scrutinised by Parliament ?
Will we see a similar, possibly virtually identical, word for word, bureaucratic Order, following the recent vote by the UN Security Council to impose sanctions on the Iranian regime ?