Published: Wed, September 13, 2017
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

United Nations Passes New Sanctions Against North Korea

The latest sanctions include a complete ban on the export of textiles from North Korea - an nearly one billion dollar hit to the regime's economy. Now it calls only for a reduction.

It said damage to the mountainous terrain at the North's Punggye-ri nuclear test site seen in satellite imagery taken after the latest explosion was more extensive than anything seen after the five previous tests. And President Trump appeared skeptical about their effectiveness, describing the United Nations vote as "another very small step".

The U.S. had initially distributed a tougher draft of the sanctions resolution that included a full embargo on oil exports to North Korea.

Haley reacted to the bomb test last week by calling for the fullest range of global sanctions, including a cutoff of all oil supplies, in a new Security Council resolution.

Monday's USA -drafted sanctions resolution, which passed unanimously, includes a ban on textile exports and a restriction on the shipments of oil products, among other measures.

But China, which sends crude oil to its smaller neighbor through a pipeline, stopped disclosing the amount it ships more than three years ago.

A recent report by a United Nations panel of experts also found flaws in the enforcement of existing sanctions.

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North Korean actors used "spearphishing" attacks targeting the personal email accounts of employees at digital currency exchanges, FireEye said in its report published Monday.

In order to pressure Beijing and Moscow to do more, the USA has to go after more companies and individuals that are suspected of doing business with the North Korean regime, according to Ruggiero.

"Today's resolution would not have happened without the strong relationship that has developed between President Trump and Chinese President Xi", Haley said. But Ruggiero, a former official at the State and Treasury departments, has called for the go further by slapping a big fine on a notable Chinese bank.

South Korea said on Wednesday traces of radioactive xenon gas were confirmed to be from a North Korean nuclear test earlier this month, but it was unable to conclude whether the test had been for a hydrogen bomb as Pyongyang claimed.

Media reports citing anonymous senior US officials last week said Washington also believed the blast was likely a hydrogen bomb. "I'm not sure how much time they're going to give China to implement a resolution like this".

In negotiations on the latest resolution, diplomats said Russian Federation had questioned what leverage the Security Council would have left if North Korea continued to conduct nuclear and missile testing.

Experts have repeatedly warned that Kim's regime will protect the weapons program above all else.

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