The latest United Nations sanctions on North Korea are expected to choke its economy still further, but with Washington and Pyongyang showing no signs of stepping back from their face off, observers have warned that the world is running out of options to resolve the crisis.
The United Nations Security Council on Friday voted unanimously to support the sanctions, spearheaded by the United States, which will see North Korea’s imports of refined petroleum products cut by almost 90 percent from January.
The self-proclaimed nuclear power – after its most powerful intercontinental ballistic missile launch in late November – is also banned from exporting food products, machinery, electrical equipment, stone and wood as the UN seeks to cut external funding for its weapons and nuclear programmes
US proposes to cut off oil supplies to North Korea at UN Security Council
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.
The resolution seeks to ban nearly 90 percent of refined petroleum product exports to North Korea by capping them at 500,000 barrels a year and, in what diplomats said was a last-minute change, demands the repatriation of North Koreans working abroad within 24 months, instead of 12 months as first proposed.
North Korea on Nov. 29 said it successfully tested a new intercontinental ballistic missile in a “breakthrough” that puts the U.S. mainland within range of its nuclear weapons whose warheads could withstand re-entry to the Earth’s atmosphere.
“It (the resolution) sends the unambiguous message to Pyongyang that further defiance will invite further punishments and isolation,” Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said following the vote.