UN Ready to Impose Further Sanctions on North Korea

Angie Massey
May 19, 2017

In a unanimously agreed statement, the 15-member UN Security Council said it was of vital importance that North Korea show "sincere commitment to denuclearisation through concrete action and stressed the importance of working to reduce tensions".

In a unanimous statement backed by China, the council stressed the importance of North Korea 'immediately showing honest commitment to de-nuclearisation through concrete action'.

The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system (THAAD), which became operational earlier this month in South Korea, aims to destroy short- and medium-range ballistic missiles amid growing nuclear and missile threats from North Korea.

Pyongyang has carried out two atomic tests and dozens of missile launches since the beginning of 2016, with the Security Council adopting two sanctions resolutions previous year to ramp up pressure and deny leader Kim Jong-Un the hard currency needed to fund his military programmes.

The reclusive North, which has defied all calls to rein in its weapons programs, has been working on a missile, mounted with a nuclear warhead, capable of striking the US mainland.

Despite North Korea's claim that Sunday's test simulated a re-entry situation, South Korean defense officials say the North probably has yet to master the technology.

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The Council demanded North Korea conduct no further nuclear and ballistic missile tests, adding it was ready to impose new and tougher sanctions on the regime. Pundits believe Pyongyang's latest provocation will provide a hard litmus test for South Korea's newly-elected President Moon Jae-in.

But on Tuesday, a North Korean diplomat defended its recent missile test-launch, telling the UN Conference on Disarmament it was a legitimate act of self-defence under global law. "We consider (the missile test) counter-productive, harmful and dangerous".

He urged other world leaders to "stop intimidating North Korea and find a peaceful solution to the problem".

The missile launched on Sunday appeared to be the most powerful one that the North has ever fired, prompting North Korea to move one step closer to the ICBM development.

According to the South China Morning Post, analysts said that the UN Security Council would likely discuss the new sanctions, with China possibly playing a role in their formation.

Other reports by GizPress

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