United Nations imposes fresh sanctions on North Korea over ballistic missile tests

United Nations imposes fresh sanctions on North Korea over ballistic missile tests

United Nations imposes fresh sanctions on North Korea over ballistic missile tests

The UN Security Council unanimously approved tough new sanctions on North Korea today in response to the latest launch of a ballistic missile that Pyongyang says is capable of reaching anywhere on the U.S. mainland.

On Friday, the US-initiated draft resolution was supported by all of the 15 member states of the UN Security Council, including Russian Federation and China.

The new resolution seeks to ban almost 90% of refined petroleum products exported to North Korea, capping them to only 500,000 barrels per year and as an added change in the demands, the diplomats demand the repatriation of North Koreans working overseas within 24 months instead of the 12 months proposed originally.

The US-drafted resolution were aimed at further cutting Pyongyang's access to hydrocarbons and order the repatriation of North Koreans working outside the country, according to diplomatic sources.

President Donald Trump has threatened to "totally destroy" North Korea if it attacks the United States while North Korea insists the world must now accept that it is a nuclear power. In September, the council had already demanded imports to be cut to 2 million barrels from 4.5 million barrels.

That's a reduction of almost 90 percent from the current 4.5 million barrels. Last week, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson told the council that the "pressure campaign must and will continue until denuclearization is achieved", as he backtracked from his offer to hold unconditional talks with Pyongyang.

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North Korea has repeatedly defied Security Council resolutions to halt its nuclear weapons and missile testing.

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said after the vote that "the unity this council has shown in leveling these unprecedented sanctions is a reflection of the worldwide outrage at the Kim regime's actions".

Resolution 2397 cuts exports of gasoline, diesel and other refined oil products by a total of 89%, Haley said.

Haley said at the time that the Trump administration believed those new sanctions, combined with previous measures, would ban over 90 percent of North Korea's exports reported in 2016.

China, which supplies most of North Korea's oil, has backed successive rounds of United Nations sanctions but had resisted past US calls to cut off supplies to its neighbor.

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