China banks fear US North Korea sanctions

Joanna Estrada
September 13, 2017

Mnuchin said that if China doesn't follow the United Nations sanctions approved on North Korea, he will seek new financial sanctions on Beijing to cut off access to the USA financial system.

North Korea's envoy to the United Nations has warned "forthcoming measures" will "make the USA suffer the greatest pain" it has ever experienced.

"The government in Washington is obsessed with kindling a political, economic and military confrontation in an attempt to suppress our nuclear capabilities, which have reached the last stage", the ambassador stated, also criticizing the resolution to impose additional sanctions on his country.

The United States called for a vote Monday on new U.N. sanctions against North Korea, though exactly what measures would be in the resolution remained a mystery.

United States representative Nikki Haley said the resolution hit Pyongyang's ability to fuel and fund its nuclear programme, and would reduce by nearly half its supply of gas, diesel and heavy fuel oil.

FireEye identified the North Korean group behind the bitcoin attacks as TEMP.Hermit. Aggravating the matter was the North Korean government's own pronouncement that their missiles were capable of reaching USA shores.

The resolution does ban North Korea from importing natural gas liquids and condensates, but it only caps Pyongyang's imports of crude oil at the level of the last 12 months, and limits the import of refined petroleum products to two million barrels a year.

"We have been clear in close consultation with the Americans that oil has to be included as an element of sanctions", South Korean foreign minister Kang Kyung-Wha told reporters.

North Korea is suspected of engaging in arms trade with countries in Africa and the Middle East.

To shoot down a ballistic missile from North Korea would require a new generation of interceptor, the Block II, which is still in development.

Media captionHow would a new war with North Korea unfold?

The UN Security Council has unanimously adopted a US-drafted resolution imposing new sanctions on North Korea following its sixth and largest nuclear test.

China's Foreign Ministry showed public support for the UN sanctions, saying Tuesday in Beijing that they reflected the unanimous stance of UN Security Council members towards peace on the Korean peninsula.

"The textile sanctions actually might have more impact, as they are probably a good source of value-added income - value added by people you don't have to pay much - for the regime", he said.

Those measures introduced a complete ban on coal and iron exports, blocked worldwide sales of North Korean lead ore and seafood, and imposed travel bans and asset freezes on individuals and companies.

Both Beijing and Moscow had strong words for Washington. "We are not looking for war", US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told the Council after the vote.

Russia, which also shares a border with North Korea, is similarly unenthusiastic about the idea of losing another buffer state, and having U.S. troops creep closer to its eastern flank.

South Korea's presidential Blue House said on Tuesday the only way for Pyongyang to end diplomatic isolation and become free of economic pressure was to end it nuclear program and resume dialogue.

The statement from Lee Sang-chul, the vice chief of the Blue House national security office, came a day after ruling party politicians in Seoul said the relocation of tactical nukes could place South Korea in greater danger.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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