Money-laundering watchdog: Close North Korean banks

The watchdog that monitors global and illicit misuse of funds has cited North Korea as a top source of "ongoing and substantial" money laundering and terrorist financing and urged countries to close North Korean banks.

The Financial Action Task Force said in its report Friday after a plenary session that North Korea has failed to address "significant deficiencies" in its system to combat the ills that pose a risk to the international financial system. It also expressed concern over illicit activities linked to the proliferation and financing of weapons of mass destruction.

Iran was singled out but the task force chose to maintain its suspension of counter-measures. Pakistan escaped mention, despite speculation that it could be listed.