US imposes sanctions on three North Korean officials
FILE PHOTO: A North Korean flag flies on a mast at the Permanent Mission of North Korea in Geneva October 2, 2014. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/File Photo

The United States on Monday imposed sanctions on three North Korea officials, including a top aide to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, the U.S. Treasury Department said on Monday.

Ryong Hae Choe, an aide close to Kim who, according to the U.S. Treasury, heads the Workers’ Party of Korea Organization and Guidance Department, was sanctioned, as were State Security Minister Kyong Thaek Jong and the director of North Korea’s Propaganda and Agitation Department, Kwang Ho Pak.

The action was taken under an executive order aimed at punishing Pyongyang for conducting cyber attacks and abusing human rights, a statement on the Treasury’s website showed.

Reporting by Tim Ahmann; Editing by David Alexander