China tells banks to stop services to N. Korean customers

China tells banks to stop services to N. Korean customers

China tells banks to stop services to N. Korean customers

A magnitude 3.4 tremor was detected in North Korea, China's natural disaster agency said, while a South Korean weather agency said it was not triggered artificially.

South Korea's weather agency, however, said it was examining the quake and took the view that it was a naturally occurring phenomenon.

North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Un, has said Trump would "pay dearly" for threatening to "totally destroy" North Korea if the USA was forced to defend itself or its allies against a North Korean attack. The North has threatened to test a hydrogen bomb over the Pacific.

"This mission is a demonstration of United States resolve and a clear message that the President has many military options to defeat any threat", Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said in a statement.

The move escalated tensions with the US and North Korea's neighbors, and this week its foreign minister said the regime's options included testing a hydrogen bomb in the Pacific Ocean.

North Korea's foreign minister, Ri Yong Ho, who is in NY for a United Nations meeting, warned on Thursday that Kim could consider a hydrogen bomb test of an unprecedented scale over the Pacific.

The first sign Pyongyang has conducted a nuclear test is usually seismic activity.

Monitoring groups estimate that the nuclear test conducted in North Korea earlier this month had a yield of 250 kilotons, which is 16 times the size of the USA bomb that destroyed Hiroshima in 1945.

A nuclear launch by North Korea would come dangerously close to an act of war, said Lee Choon Geun, a missile expert from South Korea's Science and Technology Policy Institute. Trump ordered new sanctions on Thursday that opened the door wider to blacklisting people and entities doing business with North Korea. "Regarding which measures to take, I don't really know since it is what Kim Jong Un does", said Ri.

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Some experts say Beijing has only itself to blame, for helping North Korea in the past and allegedly enabling the regime to develop its missile program.

North Korea has launched dozens of missiles under Kim Jong Un's leadership as it accelerates a weapons program created to give it the ability to target the United States with a powerful, nuclear-tipped missile.

To comply with a UN Security Council resolution calling for sanctions over North Korea's nuclear activity, China said Friday that it will limit its exports of refined petroleum products to Pyongyang as well as ban imports of the North's textiles. "He will be tested like never before", Trump added.

North Korea fired a missile last week that travelled over Japan's northern island of Hokkaido and plunged into the Pacific Ocean.

On Friday CNN reported that Kim's foreign minister Ri Yong Ho told reporters in NY that Pyongyang could launch a nuclear missile test in response to Trumps threat to "totally destroy" North Korea during his speech at the United Nations earlier this week.

Under Kim Jong Un's leadership, Pyongyang carried out several intercontinental ballistic missile tests, including 20 missile tests in 2016.

If enforced, the Chinese action Trump described could severely impede the isolated North's ability to raise money for its missile and nuclear development.

The move comes two days after Trump told the UN General Assembly in his debut address that if necessary, the United States would "totally destroy" North Korea.

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