The European Union has extended sanctions aimed at punishing North Korea for its nuclear and missile programs. In a statement, Brussels said the punitive measures include a ban on the sale of natural gas to Pyongyang.

The bloc will also limit the sale of crude oil and petrol products. In addition the EU will not provide new work permits for DPRK nationals to work in any of the 28 member states.

The measures are set to be formally approved during a meeting of foreign ministers next week.

Last month the bloc adopted UN restrictions imposed by the Security Council into its own sanctions program after Pyongyang conducted its sixth nuclear test.

The North reacted furiously to the UN measures vowing a painful response against the United States.