August 12, 2017

NORTH KOREA: UN Security Council Unanimously Passes Resolution Written By The US To Hit North Korea With Export Sanctions. Macron, Trump To Work Together To Defuse N. Korea Threat.

Reuters News
reporting by Michelle Nichols; editing by James Dalgleish
Friday August 4, 2017

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - A U.S.-drafted United Nations Security Council resolution aims to slash by a third North Korea's $3 billion annual export income by banning the country's exports of coal, iron, iron ore, lead, lead ore and seafood, a council diplomat said on Friday.

The diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, said there was a "high confidence" that Russia and China would support the draft resolution.

The United States is aiming for a vote on Saturday to impose the stronger sanctions over North Korea's two intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) tests in July, diplomats said. A resolution needs nine votes in favor, and no vetoes by the United States, China, Russia, France or Britain, to be adopted.

The draft resolution would also prohibit countries from increasing the current numbers of North Korean laborers working abroad, ban new joint ventures with North Korea and any new investment in current joint ventures, said the diplomat.
The Telegraph, UK
written by Harriet Alexander
Saturday August 5, 2017

The United Nations security council has approved new sanctions on North Korea, placing a $1 billion ban on the country’s exports which will cut the country’s revenues by a third.

The resolution was approved unanimously on Saturday, meaning that China and Russia abandoned their traditional support for North Korea and joined in a rare united show of force.

Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the UN, said that the resolution was "the single largest economic package ever levelled against the North Korean regime."

It is also the largest reprimand ever issued by the UN for a ballistic missile test.

Britain welcomed the sanctions, with Lord Ahmad, the minister for commonwealth and the UN, calling on all countries to implement the new measures “fully and robustly”.

“The UK and our international partners are united in opposing and standing firm against the threat posed by North Korea,” he said.

“This resolution will cut the resources that North Korea is abusing to fund its reckless and illegal pursuit of nuclear and ballistic missile programmes.

“North Korea has chosen this extremely dangerous and destabilising path. The regime is prioritising the pursuit of these weapons over and above its people, peace and stability in the region. The North Korean regime needs to change its course immediately.”

Coal exports – North Korea’s largest source of income – will now be banned, costing the regime over $401 million in revenues per year.

Export of iron and iron ore, worth roughly $250 million per year, will be halted, as will exports of seafood worth $300 million and lead and lead ore, worth $110 million.

The resolution also bans countries from giving any additional permits to North Korean labourers - another source of money for Kim Jong-un's regime. It prohibits all new joint ventures with North Korean companies and bans new foreign investment in existing ones.

The security council has already imposed six rounds of sanctions that have failed to halt North Korea's drive to improve its ballistic missile and nuclear weapons capabilities.

But it is hoped that Saturday’s sanctions, the text of which was jointly drafted by the US and China, may make Mr Kim think twice about his weapons programme.

Matthew Rycroft, the British ambassador to the UN, denied that previous sanctions had failed.

"We are gradually tightening the control over the North Korean regime," said Mr Rycroft.

"Sanctions take time to work. So I’m not pretending that tomorrow there will be a radically different position in relation to North Korea, but over time the sanctions demonstrate the unity of the international community, particularly if they are well implemented."

Twice last month the country successfully tested intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) capable of reaching the US.

"All of this ICBM and nuclear irresponsibility has to stop," said Mrs Haley.

The resolution condemns the launches "in the strongest terms" and reiterates previous calls for North Korea to suspend all ballistic missile launches and abandon its nuclear weapons and nuclear programme "in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner."

In addition, the security council text condemned Pyongyang for spending money on missiles while its people suffered. Well over half the population lacks sufficient food and medical care, while a quarter suffers from chronic malnutrition, according to the UN.

Nine North Koreans, mainly officials or representatives of companies and banks, were added to the UN sanctions blacklist, banning their travel and freezing their assets. It also imposes an asset freeze on two companies and two banks.

Yet, although the economic sanctions have teeth, Washington did not get everything it wanted.

In early July, Mrs Haley told the security council that the international community could cut off major sources of hard currency to North Korea, restrict oil to its military and weapons programmes, increase air and maritime restrictions and hold senior officials accountable. Neither oil nor new air restrictions are included in the resolution.

Its adoption follows
reassurance from Rex Tillerson, the secretary of state, on Wednesday that Washington is not seeking regime change or an accelerated reunification of the Korean Peninsula - comments welcomed by China's foreign minister.

Mr Tillerson also said the United States wants to talk eventually with North Korea but thinks discussions would not be productive if the Pyongyang comes with the intention of maintaining its nuclear weapons.
North Korea has repeatedly said it will never give up its nuclear arsenal, which it sees as a guarantee of its security.

The unanimous vote was welcomed on Twitter by Donald Trump, who hailed the support the US had received from China and Russia.
France24 News
Macron, Trump to work together to defuse N. Korea threat
written by Staff, AFP, and Reuters
Saturday August 12, 2017

US President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron spoke by phone on Saturday and agreed to work together on a crisis on the Korean Peninsula, the White House said in a statement.

"They discussed the need to confront the increasingly dangerous situation associated with North Korea's destabilizing and escalatory behavior," the White House said in a statement.

The Elysee office issued a statement saying that President Macron agreed to work with his US counterpart with the aim of "getting North Korea to conform to its international obligations".

In the statement Macron referred to his "concern at the ballistic and nuclear threat coming from North Korea", saying world leaders needed to work to get Pyongyang to "resume the path of dialogue without conditions".

Macron had joined a chorus of international voices urging restraint in the crisis, which has alarmed the global community as Trump has engaged in days of verbal sparring with Pyongyang.

Macron added that France and other UN Security Council members want North Korea to "proceed with the complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement of its nuclear and ballistic programmes".

He also assured "France's allies and partners in the region of our solidarity in the current period".

Xi Jinping, the leader of North Korea's key ally China, urged Trump on Saturday to avoid rhetoric that could inflame tensions, after the US leader ramped up his warnings to Pyongyang, saying the Stalinist regime would "truly regret" taking hostile action against the United States.

Trump's warning came after the North threatened to fire ballistic missiles over Japan towards the US Pacific island of Guam.

The Chinese foreign ministry said Xi urged Trump to avoid "words and deeds" that would "exacerbate" the already-tense situation and to exercise restraint and seek a political settlement.

Earlier this week, France had praised Trump's "determination" in standing up to Pyongyang.
France24 news
written by Staff
Tuesday March 26, 2013 <== PLEASE NOTE: Obama was president at the time.

North Korea said on Tuesday its strategic rocket and long-range artillery units have been ordered to be combat ready, targeting U.S. military bases on Guam, Hawaii and mainland America after U.S. bombers flew sorties threatening the North.

The order, issued in a statement from the North’s military “supreme command”, marks the latest fiery rhetoric from Pyongyang since the start of joint military drills by U.S. and South Korean forces early this month.

South Korea’s defence ministry said it saw no sign of imminent military action by North Korea.

“From this moment, the Supreme Command of the Korean People’s Army will be putting into combat duty posture No. 1 all field artillery units, including long-range artillery units and strategic rocket units, that will target all enemy objects in U.S. invasionary bases on its mainland, Hawaii and Guam,” the North’s KCNA news agency said.

The North previously threatened nuclear attack on the United States and South Korea, although it is not believed to have the capability to hit the continental United States with an atomic weapon. But the U.S. military’s bases in the Pacific area are in range of its medium-range missiles.

South Korea’s defence ministry said it had detected no signs of unusual activity by the North’s military but will monitor the situation. The South and the U.S. military are conducting drills until the end of April, which they have stressed are strictly defensive in nature.

The North has previously threatened to strike back at the U.S. military accusing Washington of war preparations by using B-52 bombers which have flown over the Korean peninsula as part of the drills.

North Korea has said it has abrogated an armistice that ended the 1950-53 Korean War and threatened a nuclear attack on the United States.
Yahoo news
written by Jack Kim and Terril Yue Jones, Reuters
Saturday March 9, 2013 <== PLEASE NOTE: Obama was president at the time.

SEOUL/BEIJING - North Korea formally rejected a U.N. Security Council resolution on Saturday that demands an end to its nuclear arms program, as China called for calm, saying sanctions were not the "fundamental" way to resolve tensions on the Korean peninsula.

Pyongyang said it would pursue its goal of becoming a full-fledged nuclear weapons state, despite the sanctions which were unanimously imposed on Friday by the Security Council.

The sanctions aim to tighten financial restrictions and crack down on North Korea's attempts to transport banned cargo.

The resolution, the fifth since 2006 aimed at stopping the North's nuclear and ballistic missile program, coincides with a sharp escalation of security tensions on the Korean peninsula after Pyongyang's third nuclear test on February 12.

"The DPRK, as it did in the past, vehemently denounces and totally rejects the 'resolution on sanctions' against the DPRK, a product of the U.S. hostile policy toward it," the North's foreign ministry spokesman said in a statement.

DPRK is short for the North's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

"The world will clearly see what permanent position the DPRK will reinforce as a nuclear weapons state and satellite launcher as a result of the U.S. attitude of prodding the UNSC into cooking up the 'resolution.'"

The North's sole major ally China has said it wants sanctions fully implemented, but Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi told a news conference on Saturday the best way to resolve the problem was still through dialogue.

"We always believe that sanctions are not the end of Security Council actions, nor are sanctions the fundamental way to resolve the relevant issues," Yang said, urging all sides to exercise calm and restraint.

"The only right way to resolve the issue is to take a holistic approach and resolve the concerns of all parties involved in a comprehensive and balanced manner through dialogue and consultations."


The sanctions are designed to make punitive measures more like those used against Iran, which Western officials say have been surprisingly successful.

Analysts say China's leaders have become increasingly irritated with North Korea and its recent actions have sparked policy debate within China, but caution that Beijing is not likely to give up on its old friend any time soon.

"The calculus in China is changing to the point where it is starting to ask the question: Is North Korea more of a liability than a benefit?" said Paul Haenle, former China Director on the U.S. National Security Council and White House representative to the Six Party Talks.

"What Yang Jiechi said today is a reflection that it will not be taking actions with respect to North Korea that will cause more instability. It will not change its policy overnight and abandon North Korea."

The United States warned North Korea it will achieve nothing by repeating threats of provocative actions and will only drive itself deeper into international isolation.

"The United States of America and our allies are prepared to deal with any threat and any reality that occurs in the world," U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said ahead of his visit to Afghanistan on Friday. "We are aware of what's going on. We have partnerships in that part of the world that are important."

North Korea defied international warnings and conducted a third nuclear test in February, setting off a device that yielded a stronger blast than its previous test in 2009. It claimed it had made progress in miniaturizing an atomic weapon.

Experts are skeptical of such a claim, and the threat this week to attack the United States, seeing them more as an attempt to boost its security leverage in the face of deepening diplomatic isolation and growing military pressure from the United States and South Korea, which are conducting joint military drills to deter any armed aggression from Pyongyang.

North Korea has accused the United States of using military drills in South Korea as a launch pad for a nuclear war and declared on Tuesday it would scrap the armistice with Washington that ended hostilities in the 1950-53 Korean War.

The two Koreas are technically at war because the armistice and not a formal peace treaty ended their 1950-53 conflict.

Published on Dec 19, 2014: President Obama responded directly to North Korea's "costly" attack on Sony for producing "The Interview," saying the United States will launch a "proportional" counter attack against North Korea. Obama also said that he disagreed with Sony's decision to cancel the film's release.

Listen to an interview with President Obama on April 26, 2016. He answers question about North Korea at 2:05.
Democrats didn't give a damn about North Korea's repeated threats when Obama was president. Nor did the Democrats give a rat's ass about Obama's threatening rhetoric towards North Korea back then either. You see folks, back when Obama was president of the United States, U.S. bombers flew sorties threatening North Korea.

But by all means keep pushing the narrative of wanting "diplomatic" response to North Korea's threats. President Trump gave North Korea a VERBAL warning to their threats and President Obama gave North Korea a warning by flying U.S. bomber jets along their peninsula. I don't get it? Why is Trump a toddler and a war monger. But Obama is a saint? I for one want the president of the United States, whomever that may be, to have a strong response to ANY direct threat made toward our country. With that said, I'm grateful President Trump is letting the North Korean dictator know that he will be annihilated if he strikes at the U.S. in any way. I'm not worried. President Trump has made me feel safe with his stance toward North Korea.

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