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Japan, South Korea seek tougher sanctions on North Korea

07 September 2017 [15:07] - TODAY.AZ

By Azernews

By Ali Mustafayev

The leaders of South Korea and Japan have agreed to push for a new U.N. Security Council resolution with the "strongest" sanctions against North Korea, including cutting off all oil supplies to the impoverished country.

"Regarding the North's nuclear test and missile launches, the leaders of the two countries noted it was time to increase pressure on the North rather than engage the country in dialogue under the current conditions where the international community's condemnation and pressure against the North continue to intensify," the chief press secretary of the Korean President, Yoon Young-chan said in Vladivostok, according to Yonhap.

The leaders of South Korea and Japan have agreed to work together to build support for further sanctions against North Korea following its latest nuclear test.

North Korea conducted its sixth and most powerful nuclear test on September 3. The explosion was said to be almost 10 times more powerful than the country's last nuclear test a year ago. The test was realized under the order of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to defy its Southern neighbor and the USA after another joint military exercise was conducted on the Korean peninsula.

Earlier, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spoke with President Donald Trump and Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

Japan’s Foreign Ministry said that Abe strongly encouraged Russia to respond constructively as a permanent member of the Security Council.

Abe told Trump that North Korea’s nuclear test is a serious threat to Japan’s security that poses a “head-on challenge” to the international community.

The widening of sanctions against Pyongyang was previously offered by the United States, in order to restrict the country’s income as much as it is possible.

The Trump administration says the UN needs to tighten economic sanctions to pressure North Korea to change its behavior and start talking. The United States wants the U.N. Security Council to impose an oil embargo on North Korea, ban its exports of textiles and the hiring of North Korean laborers abroad, and to subject leader Kim Jong Un to an asset freeze and travel ban, according to a draft resolution seen by Reuters on Wednesday.

Donald Trump also urged China to do more to rein in its neighbor.

Beijing said it agreed the United Nations should take more action against North Korea.

“Given the new developments on the Korean peninsula, China agrees that the U.N. Security Council should make a further response and take necessary measures,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told reporters on Thursday.

Vladimir Putin previously warned that cutting off oil exports to North Korea would violate humanitarian norms, signaling that Moscow would likely block U.S.-led efforts to impose an oil embargo on Pyongyang following its sixth nuclear test.

Meanwhile, Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg stated that North Korea's "reckless pursuit of nuclear weapons" demands a “united response” from the international community.

Stoltenberg, during a news conference at a military base in Estonia, also called on North Korea to "abandon all nuclear and ballistic missile programs," adding that their nuclear program is in "violation of multiple UN Security Council resolutions and a major threat to the non-proliferation regime.”

North Korea said it would respond to any U.N. sanctions and U.S. pressure with “powerful counter measures”, accusing the United States of aiming to start a war.


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