UN votes Wednesday on tough new North Korea sanctions

The UN Security Council votes Wednesday on a resolution that would impose the toughest sanctions on North Korea in two decades.

See Full Article

The U.S. and North Korea's traditional ally China spent seven weeks negotiating the new sanctions, which include mandatory inspections of cargo leaving and entering North Korea by sea or air, in response to Pyongyang's latest nuclear test and rocket launch. Both are in defiance of previous council resolutions.

The U.S., its Western allies and Japan pressed for new sanctions that went beyond the North's nuclear and missile programs but China, Pyongyang's neighbour, was reluctant to impose measures that could threaten the stability of North Korea and cause its economy to collapse.

The final draft, obtained by The Associated Press, would eliminate loopholes in previous sanctions resolutions and impose new ones. But it stresses that the new measures are not intended to have "adverse humanitarian consequences" for civilians, the majority who face economic hardships and food shortages.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Tuesday that the U.S. administration knows the North Korean people "have suffered for far too long" because of decisions from their government. "And that's why this sanctions regime is targeted more specifically at the North Korean elite."

For the first time, the draft resolution would require the 192 other UN member states to inspect all cargo from North Korea or heading to the country for illicit goods, ban any sale or transfer of small arms and light weapons to Pyongyang, and require all countries to expel diplomats from the North who engage in "illicit activities."

It would also for the first time impose significant sanctions on broad sections of the North Korean economy.

The draft resolution would ban the export of coal, iron and iron ore that is being used to fund North Korea's nuclear or ballistic missile programs -- and it would prohibit all exports of gold, titanium ore, vanadium ore and rare earth minerals. It would also ban aviation fuel exports to the country, including "kerosene-type rocket fuel."

In the financial and banking sector, countries would be required to freeze the assets of companies and other entities linked to Pyongyang's nuclear and missile programs. Under a previous resolution, they were encouraged to do so.

The draft would also prohibit all countries from opening new branches, subsidiaries and representative offices of North Korean banks, and ban financial institutions from establishing new joint ventures or establishing or maintaining correspondent relationships with these banks. It would also order countries to close all North Korean banks and terminate all banking relationships within 90 days.

North Korea is already subject to four rounds of UN sanctions imposed since the country's first nuclear test in 2006.

Under those resolutions, it is banned from importing or exporting nuclear or missile items and technology as well as luxury goods. The new draft would expand the list of banned items -- adding luxury items such as expensive watches, snowmobiles, recreational water vehicles and lead crystal.

It would also add 16 individuals, 12 "entities" including the National Aerospace Development Agency which was responsible for February's rocket launch, and 31 ships owned by the North Korean shipping firm Ocean Maritime Management Company to the sanctions blacklist. That requires the freezing of assets and, in the case of individuals, a travel ban as well.

The draft resolution would ban Pyongyang from chartering vessels or aircraft, and call on countries to "de-register" any vessel owned, operated or crewed by the North.

As with previous resolutions, the test will be whether UN member states enforce the sanctions. A UN panel of experts monitoring the sanctions has repeatedly pointed out that enforcement in a significant number of cases has been weak.

North Korea has ignored many demands, and tried to circumvent others.

It started off the new year with what it claims was its first hydrogen bomb test on Jan. 6 and followed up with the launch of a satellite on a rocket on Feb. 7. It was condemned by much of the world as a test of banned missile technology.

The draft resolution calls for a resumption of six-party talks leading to the goal of "the verifiable denuclearization of the Korean peninsula in a peaceful manner." North Korea withdrew from the talks in 2008.

Associated Press writers Kevin Freking in Washington and Cara Anna in New York contributed to this report



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Peace parades mark 25th anniversary of Los Angeles riots

    World News CTV News
    LOS ANGELES -- Twenty-five years ago, a jury acquitted four white police officers in the beating of black motorist Rodney King, sparking looting and violence that would turn into one of the deadliest race riots in American history. Source
  • 'I just want to see her breathe': Woman meeting mom who got twin sister's lungs

    Canada News CTV News
    Strangers are meeting in Winnipeg this weekend, more than a year after a tragic event changed their lives forever. One night, in February 2016, 23-year-old Leanne Germain, 23, died of complications from taking the drug ecstasy. Source
  • Tories launch campaign rally as N.S. waits for election call

    Canada News CTV News
    HALIFAX -- Nova Scotia's opposition parties have officially launched their campaigns in anticipation of an election call that could come as soon as this weekend thanks to an apparent gaffe by the governing Liberal party. Source
  • Pope urges against war with North Korea: 'I don't think humanity today could bear it'

    World News CTV News
    Pope Francis is warning that "a good part of humanity" will be destroyed if tensions with North Korea escalate, and he is calling for diplomacy and a revived United Nations to take the lead in negotiating a resolution. Source
  • Halifax mother who gave birth in Superstore didn't know she was pregnant

    Canada News CBC News
    The husband of the woman who gave birth in a Halifax grocery store says the arrival of little Ezra was even more of a surprise than it first seemed: the mother didn't know she was pregnant. Source
  • Samantha Bee gets star support for her Not The Correspondents' Dinner event

    World News CBC News
    Washington's once-glitzy "nerd prom" is about to get overshadowed. Late-night TV star Samantha Bee was pulling in celebrities for the first Not the White House Correspondents' Dinner on Saturday — a tongue-in-cheek play on the real bash, where journalists, the president and, in recent years, lots of bold-face names have mingled. Source
  • Calculators included in places where teens stash their drugs

    World News Toronto Sun
    Does your teen spend a lot of time with his graphing calculator? That could be a sign of a drug problem, according to the DEA. On April 20, the Drug Enforcement Administration tweeted out a link with a simple imperative: Find out where kids hide drugs. Source
  • Teens face murder charges in death of Saskatchewan restaurant owner

    Canada News CTV News
    LA RONGE, Sask. - Three teens are facing murder charges in the death of a Saskatchewan restaurant owner who police say was fatally assaulted during a robbery at his business earlier this month. RCMP say three males, aged 18, 17 and 14 were arrested Friday afternoon without incident in the La Ronge area. Source
  • Ex Montreal borough mayor convicted of sexual touching released after 1 month

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL - A lawyer for a former Montreal borough mayor says her client has been allowed to return home after serving a sixth of his sentence for sexually touching a minor. Renee Millette says Gilles Deguire was released from jail earlier this week after serving one month of a six-month sentence. Source
  • Chronicles of crime [Photos]

    World News Toronto Sun
    RANDY RINK RAT’S RAGE Thomas Clayton never stopped being a rink rat at heart. The girls, the parties, the fun. The former minor league hockey player couldn’t seem to grow up. Now, he’ll mature into old age in Attica. Source