United States presses China and Russian Federation to enforce sanctions on North Korea

Galtero Lara
Julio 21, 2018

Asked at the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado about White House national security adviser John Bolton's statement that North Korea could denuclearise in a year, Coats said: "It's technically possible but probably not going to happen".

While acknowledging there had been some ship-to-ship transfers of energy supplies despite the embargo, Coats said it had not been so significant as to prevent North Korean leaders from seeing the "consequences of sanctions".

But, Pompeo said, North Korea is "illegally smuggling" in refined petroleum products beyond the quota of 500,000 barrels per year allowed under United Nations sanctions, mainly by ship-to-ship transfers.

The council past year adopted three rafts of sanctions targeting North Korea's economy in response to Pyongyang's sixth nuclear test and a series of ballistic missile launches.

The cutoff of fuel has been primarily enforced by China, which supplies North Korea with most of its energy needs, but also Russian Federation, which has delivered some oil to Pyongyang.

The council a year ago adopted three rafts of sanctions targeting North Korea's economy in response to Pyongyang's sixth nuclear test and a series of ballistic missile launches.

US documents sent to the sanctions committee and obtained by The Associated Press cite 89 instances between January 1 and May 30 in which North Korean tankers likely delivered refined products "illicitly procured" via ship-to-ship transfers.

Russia's deputy United Nations ambassador, Dmitry Polyansky, said that Pompeo confirmed the U.S.

This week, South Korea received exemptions from the Security Council committee monitoring North Korea sanctions for communications lines between the North and South and for some goods for the North including furniture, transport vehicles and a bus. We didn't block anything - we put it on hold.

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"I am guessing North Korea responded that they should first take a confidence-building step together, for example by declaring an end to the (1950-53 Korean) war", Roh reportedly said.

China's UN Ambassador Ma Zhaoxu said China was committed to denuclearisation of the Korean peninsula and to the promotion of dialogue and negotiations.

But North Korea has taken no demonstrable steps towards denuclearization, and now, according to Pompeo and Haley, it is violating those sanctions with Chinese and Russian help by illegally smuggling petroleum products into the country at levels higher than allowed by United Nations sanctions.

These actions are all "generating significant revenues for the regime and they must be stopped", he said.

Haley criticized "some friends who want to go around the rules", and especially Russian Federation and China for blocking the sanctions committee from demanding that all countries halt shipments of petroleum products to North Korea immediately. One diplomat said China quickly supported the "hold, " which automatically delays action on the US request for six months.

On her way into the meeting, Kang said Kim had made a clear commitment to scrap his nuclear and missile programs "and we will hold them up to that commitment".

"What we need now, though, is we need to continue that", Pompeo said. We don't need any more information. Haley asked. "They claim they need more information". North Korea doesn't independently publish figures on economic growth.

The sanctions banned North Korea's exports of raw commodities and severely restricted its supplies of oil, which are vital to sustaining the country's military program.

"We also request the U.S. side to provide additional factual information to facilitate all states to study and make judgment", said the Chinese mission in its response to the council.

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