Trump: UN ‘Slack­ers’ march move a start against Macron

Daily Nation (Barbados) - - Our World -

WASH­ING­TON – United States Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump said yes­ter­day the lat­est United Na­tions sanc­tions on North Korea were only a very small step and noth­ing com­pared to what would have to hap­pen to deal with the coun­try’s nu­clear pro­gramme.

The UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil unan­i­mously voted to boost sanc­tions on North Korea on Mon­day, with its prof­itable tex­tile ex­ports now banned and fuel sup­plies capped, prompt­ing a tra­di­tion­ally de­fi­ant threat of re­tal­i­a­tion against the US.

Mon­day’s de­ci­sion, trig­gered by the North’s sixth and largest nu­clear test this month, was the ninth such res­o­lu­tion unan­i­mously adopted by the 15-mem­ber Se­cu­rity Coun­cil since 2006 over North Korea’s bal­lis­tic mis­sile and nu­clear pro­grammes.

A tougher ini­tial US draft was weak­ened to win the sup­port of China, Py­ongyang’s main ally and trad­ing part­ner, and Rus­sia, both of which hold veto power in the coun­cil. Sig­nif­i­cantly, it stopped short of im­pos­ing a full em­bargo on oil ex­ports to North Korea, most of which come from China.

North Korea has threat­ened the US with the “great­est pain” it has ever suf­fered fol­low­ing new sanc­tions im­posed by the UN.

Py­ongyang’s en­voy to the UN ac­cused Wash­ing­ton of opt­ing for “po­lit­i­cal, eco­nomic and mil­i­tary con­fronta­tion”.

Trump told re­porters at the start of a meet­ing with Malaysian Prime Min­is­ter Na­jib Razak that he was pleased Malaysia no longer did busi­ness with North Korea, be­fore adding that he had just dis­cussed the UN vote with Sec­re­tary of State Rex Tiller­son.

“We think it’s just an­other very small step, not a big deal. ... I don’t know if it has any im­pact, but cer­tainly it was nice to get a 15-to-noth­ing vote. But those sanc­tions are noth­ing com­pared to what ul­ti­mately will have to hap­pen,” he said with­out elab­o­rat­ing. Trump has vowed not to al­low North Korea to pos­sess a nu­clear mis­sile ca­pa­ble of hit­ting the US.

US Trea­sury Sec­re­tary Steven Mnuchin told a con­fer­ence ear­lier yes­ter­day that if China did not fol­low through on the new sanc­tions, “we will put ad­di­tional sanc­tions on them and pre­vent them from ac­cess­ing the U.S. and in­ter­na­tional dol­lar sys­tem.”

Wash­ing­ton so far has mostly held off on new sanc­tions against Chi­nese banks and other com­pa­nies do­ing busi­ness with North Korea, given fears of re­tal­i­a­tion by Bei­jing and pos­si­bly far-reach­ing ef­fects on the world econ­omy. ( Reuters) PARIS – Tens of thou­sands of hard-left trade union­ists marched through French cities yes­ter­day to protest against Pres­i­dent Em­manuel Macron’s labour law re­forms, although turnout ap­peared lower than at demon­stra­tions in pre­vi­ous years.

Hit­ting back at Macron’s pledge to give no ground to “slack­ers”, some in Paris car­ried plac­ards read­ing: Slacker On Strike, while in Bordeaux demon­stra­tors chanted: “Macron you’re screwed, the slack­ers are in the streets.”

The Min­istry of the In­te­rior said 223 000 pro­test­ers turned out across the coun­try, com­pared with about 400 000 dur­ing March 2016’s demon­stra­tion.

The Com­mu­nist Partylinked CGT union put the num­ber of marchers at 400 000. ( Reuters)

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