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U.S. Slaps Sanctions On Overseas Companies

The United States is imposing sanctions on several Chinese, Iranian and North Korean companies for violating arms export regulations governing missile technology and other proliferation activities.

The penalties announced by the State Department in Monday's Federal Register are the first of their kind from the new administration and affect four firms in China, three in North Korea and two in Iran.

The sanctions are largely symbolic as they bar the companies from trade with the U.S. that they were not likely involved in. Although they were in the works for some time, the Obama team signed off on the sanctions on Jan. 21, a day after it took office, signaling a continuing tough stance from Washington on weapons technology transfers.