The U.N. Security Council on Friday unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea following its latest intercontinental ballistic missile test, a move that analysts said could have a significant impact on the isolated country's struggling economy.
On Friday (22 December) the US-drafted resolution was voted for by North Korea's main trading partner, China, and Russian Federation, a traditional ally of Pyongyang.
This is the fourth resolution on North Korea in 2017 and the third one toughening the anti-North Korean sanctions during the year.
Quoting a diplomatic source, Reuters said Thursday that the measures seek to slash almost 90 percent of refined petroleum products exported to North Korea.
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"We believe maximum pressure today is our best lever to a political and diplomatic solution tomorrow". Japan holds the presidency of the Security Council this month.
Ahead of the council meeting, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said a unanimous vote would be important to send a clear message to Pyongyang that it must abandon its ambition to develop nuclear weapons. And it caps imports of refined oil products, including diesel and kerosene, at 500,000 barrels a year.
USA diplomats have made clear they are seeking a diplomatic solution but have proposed new, tougher sanctions to ratchet up pressure on North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
China, however, raised objections at those sanctions and the request to ban the 10 ships from ports worldwide will again be considered on December 28. It also banned all textile exports and prohibited any country from authorizing new work permits for North Korean workers - two key sources of hard currency for the northeast Asian nation.
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North Korea on November 29 said it successfully tested a new intercontinental ballistic missile in a "breakthrough" that puts the US mainland within range of its nuclear weapons whose warheads could withstand re-entry to the Earth's atmosphere.
The previous sanctions resolution was adopted on September 11 in response o North Korea's sixth and strongest nuclear test explosion on September 3. The United States estimated about 93,000 North Koreans are working overseas, a US official said.
US President Donald Trump's new national security strategy is a "criminal document" that seeks the "total subordination of the whole world to the interests of the US", North Korea's foreign ministry says.
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