UN Aims to Sanction North Korea with Oil and Asset Freeze

Marsha Scott
September 10, 2017

The diplomats, speaking on condition of anonymity because discussions on the resolution have been private, said all 15 Security Council members discussed the draft on Friday, and both China and Russian Federation appeared willing to negotiate.

South Korean officials have said they are bracing for a possible further missile test by North Korea when it marks its founding anniversary on September 9.

Several diplomats said the US demand for a speedy council vote was aimed at putting maximum pressure on China and reflected Washington's escalating concern over North Korea's latest nuclear test, which its leaders touted as a hydrogen bomb, and its recent ballistic missile launch over Japan.

In reference to the United Nations vote, Japan is pushing for strong oil sanctions, while the US wants to ban textile exports and shut down the hiring of North Korean guest workers in other countries.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said it is too early to talk about a vote at the Security Council on new North Korea sanctions, insisting any pressure should be balanced against restarting talks.

"As we've built military power by tightening our belts for decades, we've stepped up to the status of a nuclear power and a global military power with an atom bomb, a hydrogen bomb and an intercontinental ballistic missile", the newspaper wrote. Describing Mrs Haley's comments as a "hysteric fit", the state-run Korean Central News Agency threatened unspecified retribution.

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The United States is very concerned that North Korea might not be able to be deterred, a senior Trump administration official said on Thursday, drawing a distinction between Washington's view of Pyongyang and its model for dealing with former Cold War foes. Meanwhile, the U.N.is considering fresh sanctions to counter North Korea's increasingly frequent and powerful missile launches.

"We're still assessing that test", the official told reporters in a teleconference, referring to the detonation on Sunday.

The official, speaking to reporters on condition of anonymity, also said there was a grave risk that North Korea might "miscalculate" the US response to its behaviour and warned Pyongyang not to "under-estimate American will to protect ourselves and our allies".

"The US intent is so strong on this issue and clearly they are throwing a lot at this", said a Security Council diplomat.

The Trump administration also kept up efforts to persuade other governments to scale back diplomatic and economic ties with North Korea.

Mexico has given North Korea's ambassador 72 hours to leave the country, though Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray later said it had not broken off diplomatic ties. While both sides released statements agreeing on the goal of eliminating nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula, there was no mention of next steps.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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