North Korea, US delegates exchange fiery remarks on United Nations sanctions


The new resolution ends natural gas shipments to North Korea, caps crude oil shipments at their current levels, and puts a ceiling on refined oil products such as petrol and diesel.

Before the resolution was voted, North Korea's official news agency quoted the Foreign Ministry as saying the country was "quite ready to use any ultimate means" to retaliate against the United States for the sanctions and claiming it had "near-to-completion nuclear capability".

State Department and Treasury Department officials testified to the House Foreign Affairs Committee about the USA pressure campaign against North Korea's rapid progress toward a nuclear weapon that could strike America. He called on Pyongyang to "choose a path of denuclearization, which was the only option and right way to ensure its survival". "It is a foot in the door", said one diplomat on condition of anonymity, for which, even with concessions, the adopted text remains very strong. "We reconfirm there have been no review of relocating tactical nuclear weapons".

But later, the USA put forward another draft that removed the full oil embargo, asset freeze, travel ban for Kim and softened the language on foreign workers and other issues.

"There is a long way to go before North Korea is going to feel the pressure they would need to feel to change their calculus".

He also opposed the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defence (THADD) anti-missile system by the USA in South Korea asserting that it undermined the security of China and other countries in the region. Russia's envoy said Washington's unwillingness to have U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres try to resolve the dispute "gives rise to very serious questions in our minds".

Matthew Rycroft, the British ambassador to the United Nations said measures would still be effective despite the softer tone of the sanctions. "If it proves it can live in peace, the world will live in peace with it", she told the UN Security Council after the council adopted the new sanctions.

"If North Korea continues its risky path, we will continue with further pressure".

"It is up to the global community to see that these resolutions are implemented", he warned.

"This will cut deep", U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said on the new resolution, pointing out it will hit Pyongyang's ability to fuel and fund its nuclear and missile programs and will reduce by nearly 50 percent its supply of gas, diesel and heavy fuel oil. And there's also a ban on new work permits for North Korean workers.

Additionally, the new measures will prevent overseas workers from earning wages that finance the North Korean regime - over $500 million each year - in addition to cutting off foreign investments, technology transfers and other economic cooperation, according to a statement from the U.S. mission to the UN.

The import of refined petroleum products is also limited.

By its sanctions, each time more severe, the United Nations wants to push Pyongyang to negotiate on its nuclear weapons programmes and conventional, that are deemed threatening to the world stability.

"The US is trying to use the DPRK's legitimate self- defensive measures as an excuse to strangle and completely suffocate it", the statement said, using the acronym for North Korea's formal name.

Shortly thereafter Kim Jong-Un threatened to blast the U.S. Pacific island of Guam off the map.

His committee also wrote a letter to the administration listing large Chinese entities ripe for sanctions, including the Chinese Agricultural Bank and the China Merchant Bank. "But it does allow the Trump administration to say that at least it tried", said regional security analyst Grant Newsham with the Japan Forum for Strategic Studies in Tokyo.

The weakening of the sanctions reflects the longstanding rift between sanctions hawk Washington, and China and Russian Federation, which advocate direct talks and more efforts to find a resolution through negotiations. The ban on textiles has not been a problem.

House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Edward R. Royce (R-Calif.) told me: "I believe we have to come in full throttle with cutting off institutions, primarily financial institutions domiciled in China".

"This is a compromise in order to get everybody on board", French U.N. Ambassador Francois Delattre said of the draft. "Make no mistake about it, our firmness today is our best antidote to the risk of war, to the risk of confrontation, and our firmness today is our best tool for a political solution tomorrow", he said. But the Security Council eased off the biggest target of all: the oil the North needs to stay alive, and to fuel its million-man military.

China's official Xinhua news agency on Tuesday urged the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump to proactively engage in diplomatic outreach "in order to end an "endless loop" on the Korean peninsula where "nuclear and missile tests trigger tougher sanctions and tougher sanctions invite further tests".

The test sent powerful tremors across the region, suggesting the device used was the most powerful the nation has ever tested.