UN Security Council slaps new sanctions on DPRK over missile launch

The Security Council unanimously approved the sanctions on North Korea, including banning coal and other exports worth over $1 billion.

The Foreign Ministry said on Sunday in a statement that the UNSC Resolution 2371 includes a ban on all exports of coal, iron, iron ore, lead, lead ore and seafood, and prohibits additional permits for North Korean workers overseas, which were excluded in the previous resolution. The two countries put forward a roadmap on the basis of Russia's step-by-step approach and China's idea of a dual approach - parallel efforts to move forward both denuclearization and the establishment of a peaceful mechanism on the peninsula - and China's initiative of suspension-for-suspension - which calls for the DPRK to suspend its nuclear and missile activities and for the United States and South Korea to suspend their large-scale war games, said Liu.

The sanctions ban countries from buying North Korean coal, iron, iron ore, lead, lead ore and seafood.

The export ban alone could cost North Korea upwards of one billion dollars, which equates to about a third of their total exports, and CNN reported United States Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley called it a "gut punch" to the country. This year, Pyongyang was estimated to earn $251 million from iron and iron ore exports, $113 million from lead and lead ore exports, and $295 million from seafood exports, the diplomat said. "The ball is in North Korea's court".

"It's going to hit hard but it's going to make a strong point to North Korea that all this ICBM and this nuclear irresponsibility has to stop".

China, which holds enormous financial leverage against North Korea, joined the other members of the council in the 15-0 vote.

It adds nine North Koreans, mainly officials or representatives of companies and banks, to the United Nations sanctions blacklist, banning their travel and freezing their assets.

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"The President appreciates China's and Russia's cooperation in securing passage of this resolution", the statement said, noting Trump "will continue working with allies and partners to increase diplomatic and economic pressure on North Korea".

When asked about the effectiveness of another set of sanctions - those against Russian Federation that President Donald Trump signed into law Wednesday - Haley said "we'll have to wait and see".

It would also give a green light for the committee to designate specific vessels that are breaking sanctions from entering ports all over the world, and to work with INTERPOL to enforce travel bans on North Koreans on the sanctions blacklist.

It notes United Nations findings that well over half the population lacks sufficient food and medical care, while a quarter suffers from chronic malnutrition.

While the draft resolution would impose biting economic sanctions, the US didn't get everything it wanted. Despite that, the US and two previous South Korean governments "essentially bought into a sanctions approach to try and stop North Korea", says John Delury, a North Korea watcher who teaches global relations at Seoul's Yonsei University.

Oil was not included in the draft resolution and neither are new air restrictions.

Tillerson also said the USA wants to talk eventually with North Korea, but doesn't think discussions would be productive if the North comes with the intention of maintaining its nuclear weapons.


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