North Korea Rejects UN Sanctions Resolution, Warns US

Frederick Owens
September 12, 2017

The hearing came a day after the U.N. Security Council imposed its latest sanctions over what North Korea says was a hydrogen bomb test September 3, its most powerful atomic test yet.

Before the vote, the USA removed some of the tougher proposals it had announced last week, including a complete oil embargo and measures to freeze the assets of the North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un.

While preventing the DPRK from importing all natural gas liquids and condensates, according to some observers the United Nations resolution simply capped crude oil imports at the same level at which they had been over the previous 12 months, while limiting imports of refined petroleum products to 2m barrels per year. Also, the unified manner in which the Security Council is approaching North Korea gives the global community a degree of leverage should negotiations like the Six Party Talks ever resume.

"The North Korean regime bears full responsibility for the measures that the UN Security Council has enacted today". Diplomats said China's United Nations ambassador, Liu Jieyi, who was on a Security Council trip to Ethiopia, flew back to NY on Thursday to take part in negotiations.

A statement from North Korea's foreign ministry published on the state-controlled KCNA news agency threatened the US should the sanctions be approved.

A USA official, familiar with the council negotiations and speaking on condition of anonymity, said North Korea imports some 4.5 million barrels of refined petroleum products annually and four million barrels of crude oil.

China, North Korea's sole ally and main trading partner, had strongly objected to an oil embargo initially sought by the United States out of fear that it would bring the North's economy to its knees.

Republican Rep. Ed Royce, the committee chairman, said efforts by the US and its allies to counter the threat from North Korea nuclear and missile programs should be "super-charged".

Pyongyang has staged a series of missile tests in recent months, culminating in an intercontinental ballistic missile that appeared to bring much of the United States mainland into range.

Textiles were North Korea's second-biggest export after coal and other minerals in 2016, totalling $752 million, according to data from the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency. China is now the main supplier of North Korea's crude oil.

North Korea Rejects UN Sanctions Resolution, Warns US

"We must stop its march towards a nuclear arsenal with the ability to deliver it anywhere in the world", she said of North Korea. The North Korean regime has not yet passed the point of no-return.

Chinese President Xi Jinping invited Mr Trump to pay a state visit to China when the two leaders met for the first time at Mr Trump's golf resort in Florida in April.

The much stronger version proposed by the U.S. last week, included the first asset freeze directed at Kim Jong-un, a complete ban on oil sales to his regime, and a mandate for warships from any member state to inspect ships suspected of carrying contraband to or from North Korea, and to enforce inspect using "all necessary measures".

North Korea is "ready to use a form of ultimate means", Han said, without elaborating.

Liu said relevant parties should resume negotiations "sooner rather than later".

Whether oil will be included in the final draft and the degree to which crude exports to North Korea will be cut will all come down to negotiations between the U.S., China and Russia, Duyeon Kim, a visiting senior fellow at Korean Peninsula Future Forum, told CNBC's " Capital Connection " on Monday.

Thornton said the administration "has made clear that if China and Russian Federation do not act, we will use the tools we have at our disposal". "It remains on the table at the Security Council and we will insist on it being considered".

Han added that the DPRK is "ready to use a form of ultimate means" adding 'the forthcoming measures by DPRK will make the USA suffer the greatest pain it ever experienced in its history'.

Those measures introduced a complete ban on coal and iron exports, blocked worldwide sales of North Korean lead ore and seafood, and imposed travel bans and asset freezes on individuals and companies.

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