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World

AFP
September 13, 2017

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US will suffer: DPRK

US will suffer: DPRK

UNITED NATIONS, United States: North Korea on Tuesday condemned "vicious" new UN sanctions imposed over its sixth and largest nuclear test, warning it would make the US "suffer the greatest pain" it has ever experienced.

The new sanctions imposed unanimously by the UN Security Council on Monday ban North Korean textile exports and restrict shipments of oil products.

The resolution, passed after Washington toned down its original proposals to secure backing from China and Russia, came just one month after the council banned exports of coal, lead and seafood in response to the North’s launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

North Korea Tuesday categorically rejected the new measures, with UN ambassador Han Tae-Song saying in Geneva that the US had "fabricated the most vicious sanction resolution" and warning of retaliation.

"The forthcoming measures by DPRK (North Korea) will make the US suffer the greatest pain it has ever experienced in its history," he told a disarmament conference in the Swiss city.

US ambassador Nikki Haley said on Monday at the UN the tough new measures were a message to Pyongyang that "the world will never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea". But she also held out the prospect of a peaceful resolution to the crisis.

"We are not looking for war. The North Korean regime has not yet passed the point of no return," Haley told the Security Council, adding: "If North Korea continues its dangerous path, we will continue with further pressure. The choice is theirs."

During tough negotiations, the United States dropped initial demands for a full oil embargo and a freeze on the foreign assets of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un. The resolution instead bans trade in textiles, cuts off natural gas shipments to North Korea, places a ceiling on deliveries of refined oil products and caps crude oil shipments at current levels.

It bars countries from issuing new work permits to North Korean labourers sent abroad -- there are some 93,000, providing Kim’s regime with a source of revenue to develop its missile and nuclear programmes, according to a US official familiar with the negotiations.

Under the measure, countries are authorised to inspect ships suspected of carrying banned North Korean cargo but must first seek the consent of the flag-state.

Joint ventures will be banned and the names of senior North Korean official and three entities were added to a UN sanctions blacklist that provides for an assets freeze and a global travel ban.

It was the eighth series of sanctions imposed on North Korea since it first tested a nuclear device in 2006. South Korea welcomed the resolution while Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the sanctions were much stronger than earlier measures. He urged Pyongyang to take "concrete action" toward denuclearisation.

The United States and its allies argue that tougher sanctions will pile pressure on Kim’s regime to negotiate an end to its nuclear and missile tests.

Russia and China are pushing for talks with North Korea, but the US rejects their proposal for a freeze on Pyongyang’s missile and nuclear tests in exchange for a suspension of US-South Korean military drills. China, North Korea’s sole ally and main trading partner, had strongly objected to an oil embargo initially sought by the United States out of fear it would bring the North’s economy to its knees.

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