The United States on Friday told the United Nations Security Council that it plans to call a meeting on Monday to vote on a draft resolution establishing additional sanctions on North Korea, including an oil embargo, for its missile and nuclear programme, Reuters reported.
The US wants the UNSC to impose an oil embargo on North Korea, ban its textile exports and the hiring of North Korean labourers abroad, to freeze their leader Kim Jong Un’s assets and ban him from travelling, according to a draft resolution seen by Reuters on Wednesday.
Tension on the Korean peninsula has escalated as the North has stepped up the development of weapons, testing a string of missiles this year. The US’ move comes after North Korean state media on September 3 claimed that they had successfully conducted a hydrogen bomb test. This was the country’s sixth underground nuclear test since 2006.
A Security Council resolution needs nine votes in favour and no vetoes by permanent members Britain, the US, France, Russia or China to pass. But it is not yet clear how North Korean ally China would vote. Russian President Vladimir Putin has already said imposing sanctions on North Korea over its nuclear missile programme is “useless and ineffective”.
Meanwhile, North Korea’s official news agency on Friday said the country’s “nuclear weaponisation ... has reached its final phase”, the Washington Post reported. Experts believe the isolated regime is close to its goal of developing a powerful nuclear weapon capable of reaching the United States.