UN whacks fresh sanctions on North Korea

23 December, 2017, 01:58 | Author: Martin Tyler
  • Central News Agency handout of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un released

The resolution approved Friday expresses concern that the foreign earnings from these workers are being used to support the country's nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

The United Nations Security Council has voted unanimously to impose tougher sanctions on North Korea in the wake of their latest intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) test.

The resolution seeks to ban almost 90 percent of refined petroleum product exports to North Korea by capping them at 500,000 barrels a year and, in what diplomats said was a last-minute change, demands the repatriation of North Koreans working overseas within 24 months, instead of 12 months as first proposed.

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Ahead of the council meeting, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said a unanimous vote would be important to send a clear message to Pyongyang that it must abandon its ambition to develop nuclear weapons. Crude oil supplies were capped at four million barrels per year and a ceiling of 500,000 barrels of refined petroleum products, including diesel and kerosene, was set for next year.

Specifically, the new resolution cuts deliveries of products including diesel and kerosene by nearly 90 percent, to the equivalent of 500,000 barrels per year starting January 1. Also included in the sanctions was a ban on exports of North Korean goods.

China, however, raised objections at those sanctions and the request to ban the 10 ships from ports worldwide will again be considered on December 28.

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This is the fourth resolution on North Korea in 2017 and the third one toughening the anti-North Korean sanctions during the year.

Anchor: Tensions continue to rise between North Korea and the rest of the world as Kim Jong-un asserts his country's nuclear capability and the United Nations seeks even stronger sanctions against the rogue regime.

North Korea conducted their most successful intercontinental missile launch in November.

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Speaking at the fifth Workers' Party cell chairs conference in Pyongyang the previous day, Kim reportedly said that the North has achieved the historic task of completing its nuclear force and urged the chairs to break down US sanctions and do their best to realize the party's major tasks. Repatriation of its foreign workers may also cut down vital sources of foreign currency and investment to the country's market economy.

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