United States will 'suffer greatest pain' over sanctions

The early decades

The early decades

The UN Security Council on Monday unanimously adopted a resolution to impose fresh sanctions on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) over its nuclear test on September 3 in violation of previous Security Council resolutions.

Seoul, Washington and Tokyo are trying to persuade China and Russian Federation, which oppose cutting oil supplies to the North, to back the proposed sanctions.

"We have taken an incremental approach, and despite the best of intentions, it has not worked", Haley said.

Haley further addressed the North Korean regime directly, saying it is not too late to change course.

President Donald Trump has responded to the moves with condemnation and in August threatened "fire and fury like the world has never seen" on North Korea should the rogue nation continue to threaten the United States.

The resolution is a watered-down version of what the US initially proposed, removing the demand to ban all oil imports to the North and to freeze worldwide assets of the government and leader Kim Jong Un, according to the Associated Press.

The US is now pushing for the Security Council to impose an oil embargo on the North, halt its key export of textiles and place Kim under a financial and travel ban. "But it does allow the Trump administration to say that at least it tried", said regional security analyst Grant Newsham with the Japan Forum for Strategic Studies in Tokyo. "This is the strongest set of sanctions that the Security Council has imposed".

Chinese Ambassador Liu Jieyi again called for talks "sooner rather than later".

Since the North's sixth nuclear test, talk of redeploying tactical USA nuclear weapons to the South has gained traction, especially following a weekend report citing a White House official saying Washington could consider such a deployment if Seoul makes a request.

Japanese Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera said it was vital to put pressure on North Korea through additional sanctions, including blocking or slowing its fuel supplies. "If North Korea continues its unsafe path, we will continue with further pressure", she said.

North Korea is already under United Nations sanctions in an effort to force Kim Jong-un to stop the development of nuclear weapons.

"It is dark and it's getting darker", Haley said.

The US official said the ban on textile exports would deprive North Korea of some $726 million in annual revenue. Almost 80 percent of the textile exports went to China.

The final resolution adopted by the security council on Monday imposed a ban on oil condensates exports to the regime, capped refined petroleum exports at 2m barrels a year - cutting existing export levels by half - and maintaining global exports of crude oil to North Korea at existing levels, about 4m barrels a year.

Seoul welcomed the resolution, calling it a "grave warning that (North Korea's) continued provocations will only intensify its diplomatic isolation and economic pressure". The sale of natural gas will be prohibited and refined petroleum sales will be capped at 2 million barrels annually.

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