The resolution is passed unanimously
It comes after two recent ICBM launches by North Korea
The United Nations Security Council on Saturday passed a resolution imposing new sanctions on North Korea for its continued intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) testing and violations of UN resolutions.
With 15 votes in favor, Resolution 2371 was passed unanimously.
The resolution targets North Korea’s primary exports, including coal, iron, iron ore, lead, lead ore and seafood. The sanctions also target other revenue streams, such as banks and joint ventures with foreign companies.
The sanctions will slash North Korea’s annual export revenue of $3 billion by more than a third, according to a statement from the office of Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the United Nations.
The resolution represents “the strongest sanctions ever imposed in response to a ballistic missile test,” the statement said.
The UN sanctions follow extra measures against North Korea signed into law by US President Donald Trump on Wednesday.
North Korea’s state-run newspaper Rodong Sinmun carried an article Sunday warning that the United States’ only option will be self-destruction unless it gives up its “hostile policy” against Pyongyang.
“The US mainland will sink into an unimaginable sea of fire on the day when it dares to touch our country by stupidly causing mischief and brandishing its nuclear and sanctions clubs,” the commentary – under the byline Ri Hyo Jin – warned.
‘Up to North Korea’
President Trump, vacationing in New Jersey, tweeted his approval of the Security Council’s resolution: “The United Nations Security Council just voted 15-0 to sanction North Korea. China and Russia voted with us. Very big financial impact!”
Trump has been critical of UN performance in the past but was glad to see China and Russia join with the United States to condemn and crack down on the moneymaking ventures that fuel North Korea’s outlawed missile expansion program.
As for what’s next, Haley said, it’s “completely up to North Korea.”
Two recent ICBM launches by North Korea prompted a call for action by many UN members, and Haley said the resolution includes “one of the strongest sanctions that’s have been passed in a generation.”
The Security Council measured the impact in a big round number: $1 billion in key exports from North Korea to be banned under new international law. From seafood to coal, the resolution demands a shutoff of some of the ways that the reclusive regime makes valuable hard currency to fuel its rising ballistic missile and nuclear industry.
France’s UN ambassador, Francois Delattre, said North Korea poses a “4G” threat to the world – 4G meaning “global, grave, given and growing.”
British Ambassador Matthew Rycroft said North Korea, by its ICBM launches, is showing contempt and disregard for the Security Council. “We must meet this belligerence with unequivocal condemnation and with clear, unequivocal consequences,” he said.
The resolution also bans countries from hiring additional North Korean workers, a move designed to shut off another source of hard currency for the Pyongyang regime. A Security Council diplomat said the workers are kept in deplorable conditions in many countries. Haley termed it “modern slavery.”
The resolution also placed nine people and four business entities – including a major North Korean bank – on a UN blacklist, slapping all with asset freezes or travel bans.
Adding tougher sanctions was not possible, with China opposing more severe restrictions that might have been urged by Washington. North Korea is still allowed to receive oil.
Differences between China and US
China and a few other countries would like to see dialogue between North Korea and the United States.