The United Nations Security Council on Friday imposed new sanctions on North Korea for its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes, AP reported.
The council unanimously adopted the resolution, which was drafted by the United States with support from China. It includes restrictions on its oil imports, the repatriation of North Koreans working abroad to earn revenue for Kim Jong-Un’s regime within 24 months, and a crackdown on ships smuggling banned items like coal and oil inside and out of of the country.
However, the resolution did not include the harsher measures that the United States government had sought, like freezing the international assets of the government and its leader Kim Jong-Un, and banning all imports.
US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said after the vote, “The unity this council has shown in levelling these unprecedented sanctions is a reflection of the international outrage at the Kim regime’s actions.”
The resolution imposes a nearly 90% ban on refined products, which are key to North Korea’s economy, and bans the export of food products, machinery, electrical equipment, earth and stones, wood and vessels from North Korea. All countries have been barred from exporting industrial equipment, machinery, transportation vehicles and industrial metals to the country.
It is the latest in a series of sanctions imposed on Pyongyang this year, and comes at a time when the United States and North Korea show no signs that they are willing to open talks on ending the Korean peninsula crisis.
Tensions between the North Korean regime, led by Kim Jong-un, and the United States have escalated this year, as Pyongyang has stepped up its nuclear efforts. US President Donald Trump has warned North Korea a number of times against boosting its nuclear weapons programme. The two leaders frequently trade ridicule, insults and threats at each other.
In July, Pyongyang twice launched a long-range missile that could potentially reach the US mainland. In September, it conducted its sixth atomic explosion. On November 28, North Korea launched an intercontinental ballistic missile, possibly the country’s longest-range test yet. It claimed this one had the capability to reach all of America.