President Obama continues national emergency with respect to North Korea

U.S. President Barack Obama signed a notice on Friday that will continue the national emergency with respect to North Korea for an additional year, according to the White House.

President Obama issued the notice because of the continued extraordinary and unusual national security threat of the existence and risk of proliferation of weapons-usable fissile material on the Korean Peninsula. The President said the presence of the material also poses a threat to the economy and foreign policy of the United States.

The U.S. first declared a national emergency related to North Korea when President George W. Bush signed an executive order on June 26, 2008. President Bush declared the emergency pursuant to the International Emergency Economic Powers Act and found it necessary to maintain certain restrictions related to North Korea.

On August 30, 2010, President Obama signed an executive order to expand the scope of the national emergency posed by the continued policies and actions of North Korea. In March 2010, an unprovoked attack by North Korea resulted in the sinking of a South Korean Navy ship and the death of 46 sailors. Around that time, North Korea also announced the test of a nuclear device and violated U.N. Security Council resolutions.

On April 18, 2011, President Obama signed an executive order to take added steps to address the national emergency declared in the previous orders to make sure U.N. Security Council import restrictions were put into place.

The notice to continue the most recent executive order will be published in the Federal Register and transmitted to Congress.