N/Korea: UN Backs Fresh Sanctions Over Missile Tests
The United Nations Security Council has agreed on fresh sanctions against North Korea over its missile programme.
A resolution banning North Korean exports and limiting investments in the country was passed unanimously.
Pyongyang tested two intercontinental ballistic missiles in July, claiming it now had the ability to launch a strike against the entire United States. The tests were widely condemned.
However, experts doubt the capability of the missiles to hit their targets.
The tests were condemned by South Korea, Japan and the US, and prompted the drafting of the new UN sanctions.
The export of coal, ore and other raw materials to China is one of North Korea’s few sources of cash.
Estimates say that North Korea exports about $3bn worth of goods each year – and the sanctions could eliminate $1bn of that trade.
Earlier this year, China suspended imports of coal to increase pressure on Pyongyang.
However, repeated sanctions have so far failed to deter North Korea from continuing with its missile development.
China, North Korea’s only international ally and a veto-wielding member of the UN Security Council, voted in favour of the resolution this time. It has often protected Pyongyang from harmful resolutions in the past.
The isolated state’s repeated missile and nuclear weapon tests have been condemnedby neighbours in the region.
But South Korea says it may hold direct talks with the North during a regional meeting this weekend.
Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said she was willing to talk to her counterpart from Pyongyang, if the chance “naturally occurs”.
US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will also be attending the weekend’s talks, where North Korea’s nuclear programme is expected to be a main topic.
Script reporter: Iyanu-Oluwa