By: Brian Kim
Impunity Watch Reporter, Asia
PYONGYANG, North Korea – On August 6th, the United Nations Security Council voted unanimously to pass Resolution 2371 to impose new sanctions on North Korea. The resolution received 15 votes in the affirmative by the member states as North Korea continues to test its intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capabilities. North Korea’s actions are in clear violation of United Nations resolutions.
After difficult negotiations with China, Nikki Haley, the United States ambassador to the United Nations, stated that the newly imposed sanctions will cut North Korea’s annual export revenue by $1 billion. Ambassador Haley went further to state that the sanctions are “the strongest sanctions ever imposed in response to a ballistic missile test.”
Although China has protected North Korea in the past by using its veto power on the United Nations Security Council, Beijing voted in favor of the resolution. Liu Jieyi, the Chinese Ambassador to the United Nations, was also cautious of the deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system in South Korea by the United States. Both Russia and China have expressed their discomfort in THAAD and warned against disturbing the regional security.
The United States Secretary of State stated that the United States does not hope for a regime change in North Korea. As Secretary Tillerson attends the Association of Southeastern Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional Forum in the Philippines, the conversation is expected to heavily focus on North Korea.
The ASEAN foreign ministers were divided on a proposal presented by the United States on suspending North Korea from the ASEAN Regional Forum.
Secretary Tillerson will be meeting with his Japanese counterpart and South Korean counterpart on Monday to discuss the issue further. The South Korea’s foreign ministry stated that “the three foreign ministers will share their assessments of situations caused by the series of provocations by North Korea and discuss necessary future countermeasures.”
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