UNSC approves tough new sanctions against N.Korea (Second Lead)

Posted September 14, 2017

Merkel told the Frankfurter Allgemeine newspaper on Sunday she was ready to become involved in a diplomatic initiative to end the North Korean nuclear and missiles program, and suggested the Iran nuclear talks could be a model.

Before the resolution was voted, North Korea's official news agency quoted the Foreign Ministry as saying the country was "quite ready to use any ultimate means" to retaliate against the USA for the sanctions and claiming it had "near-to-completion nuclear capability".

The text was agreed to after final negotiations between the US and China, the North's ally and major trading partner.

"Today's resolution would not have happened without the strong relationship that has developed between President [Donald] Trump and Chinese President Xi".

The US is pushing the UN Security Council to slap an oil embargo on North Korea and freeze the assets of leader Kim Jong-un in response to its latest test. The agency estimates North Korea crude imports at about 10,000 barrels a day. Almost 80% of the textile exports went to China.

McCain also stressed the importance of strengthening the nation's relations with its allies in the region including Japan and South Korea.

The textile ban is significant.

One North Korean individual blacklisted, Pak Yong-sik, a member of the Central Military Commission, who was described as being responsible for the development and implementation of the North's Workers' Party military policies and directing the country's military defense industries.

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Textiles were North Korea's second-biggest export after coal and other minerals in 2016, totaling $752 million, according to data from the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency.

On Friday, the United States mission to the UN announced that Washington would call a UN Security Council meeting on Monday to vote on a new draft resolution, set to tighten sanctions on North Korea.

Previous U.N. sanctions resolutions have been negotiated between the United States and China — North Korea's main trading partner and ally — and have taken weeks, and in some cases months, to finalize. The North Korean regime has not passed the point of no return ...

The original USA draft would have ordered all countries to impose an asset freeze and travel ban on Kim Jong Un and four other top party and government officials.

The adoption of the resolution in just a week was unusual given that relevant resolutions in the past took one to two months to be adopted.

The original USA draft would also have frozen the assets of North Korea's state-owned airline Air Koryo, the Korean People's Army and five other powerful military and party entities.

But that small window may be about to close after the United Nations passed sweeping new sanctions Monday created to increase the pressure on Pyongyang over its nuclear program.

With fresh United Nations sanctions and bitcoin's skyrocketing value, "the potential windfall from these attacks has risen accordingly", Boland said.

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The five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany conducted long-running talks with Iran that led to a 2015 deal for global sanctions to be lifted in exchange for Tehran curbing its nuclear activities.

Since 2008, photographer Eric Lafforgue ventured to North Korea six times.

"This is a compromise in order to get everybody on board", French UN Ambassador Francois Delattre said of the draft ahead of the vote.

US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin on Tuesday said China may face sanctions limiting its access to the US financial system if Beijing does not comply with the sanctions.

North Korea is threatening war, again, should the United Nations pass the harshest sanctions yet to punish the country for its latest nuclear test.

China has long anxious that a total oil cutoff would lead to North Korea's collapse.

Britain and France - permanent veto-wielding Security Council members along with the US, China and Russian Federation - have given Washington their strong backing.

The five permanent members of the Security Council are the United States, China, Russia, France and Britain.

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