Tuesday, 12 September 2017

UN imposes fresh sanctions on North Korea

Almost meeting the US wishes, the United Nations Security Council has approved new sanctions aimed at punishing North Korea for its latest missile and nuclear tests, thus causing the U.S. to win support from Russia and China.

According to Bloomberg, the decision was consented to by the 15-member Security Council on Monday following a week of talks upon North Korea’s test of its most powerful nuclear bomb. The resolution would ensure a depletion in imports of refined petroleum products to 2 million barrels a year, a ban on textile exports and strengthening of inspections of ships that are believed to be carrying cargo in breach of sanctions.

The US envoy, Nikki Haley who has been tough on the US’ position against the regime said, “We are acting in response to a dangerous new development. These are the strongest measures ever imposed on North Korea”. She added that, the U.S. remains willing to act alone to stop Kim’s nuclear program if necessary.

Though, North Korea has yet to respond to the sanctions. South Korea Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon told parliament that while dialogue is ultimately the only solution, it’s not time to talk with North Korea.

The sanction is less than Haley had sought when she pushed for a ban on oil and a freeze on Kim’s assets abroad, but it still remains a win on her side, though it’s unlikely to persuade Kim to halt his nuclear program yield to call for negotiation.

George Lopez, a professor of peace studies at the University of Notre Dame and a former UN expert on sanctions against North Korea said, “Despite the tough talk, the U.S. is willing to water down its demands to get support of Russia and China, and that is a calculation that we are more influential when there is Security Council unity”.

The sanctions were “better than nothing, but not enough to really pressure North Korea”, said Bill Richardson, a former U.S. ambassador to the UN. He thus believes that Pyongyang is likely to respond with a missile launch in the next few days.

Richardson while on Bloomberg TV added, “It’s a partial victory. China has decided to hurt North Korea, but not bring them down, not really weaken them.”

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