US and China pres­sure North Korea af­ter sanc­tions vote

Muscat Daily - - FRONT PAGE -

Manila, Philip­pines - The United States and China piled pres­sure on North Korea on Sun­day to aban­don its nu­clear mis­sile pro­gramme af­ter the UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil ap­proved tough sanc­tions which could cost Py­ongyang US$1bn a year.

One day af­ter Coun­cil mem­bers voted unan­i­mously for a par­tial ban on ex­ports aimed at slash­ing Py­ongyang’s for­eign rev­enue by a third, top diplo­mats from the key pow­ers in the dis­pute met in Manila.

US Sec­re­tary of State Rex Tiller­son said he was en­cour­aged by the vote, but of­fi­cials warned that Wash­ing­ton would closely watch China to en­sure sanc­tions are en­forced.

China’s For­eign Min­is­ter Wang Yi met his North Korean coun­ter­part Ri Hong-Yo be­fore a ma­jor re­gional se­cu­rity fo­rum be­ing hosted by the ten na­tion ASEAN. He urged the North to halt its nu­clear and bal­lis­tic mis­sile tests.

“It will help the DPRK to make the right and smart de­ci­sion,” Wang told re­porters, speak­ing through a trans­la­tor, af­ter talks with Ri - re­fer­ring to the sanc­tions and to Ri’s pres­ence in Manila.

Sat­ur­day’s UN res­o­lu­tion banned ex­ports of coal, iron and iron ore, lead and lead ore as well as fish and seafood by the cash­starved state. If fully im­ple­mented it would strip North Korea of a third of its ex­port earn­ings. The res­o­lu­tion also pre­vents North Korea from in­creas­ing the num­ber of work­ers it sends abroad.

US Sec­re­tary of State Rex Tiller­son and China’s For­eign Min­is­ter Wang Yi

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