Global Independent Analytics

China announces sanctions against North Korea

Various natural recourses will no longer fly in or out of North Korea.

Serina Sandhu reporting for the Independent: In an unexpected move, China has announced a series of sanctions against North Korea. Complying with UN sanctions, Pyongyang’s biggest supporter so far has severely limited imports of North Korean coal and sales of jet fuel.

The Security Council passed a sanctions-expanding resolution in March, with the main goal to withhold funds for North’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs, after multiple test launches from peninsula into the sea.

Among the North Korean materials to be banned, some of which are essential to the country's income, are coal, iron, iron ore, gold, titanium and rare earths.

China’s restrictions focus specifically on materials connected to nuclear programs of Pyongyang, but exclude some that have a civilian use. Some experts already stated that for the sanctions to have full effect, China’s support and cooperation are absolutely crucial, due to North Korea’s heavy reliance on its trade with Beijing.

The move by China comes after the global Nuclear Security Summit held in Washington last week. There, at a meeting between Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping, the US President said both countries were “committed to the [denuclearization] of the Korean Peninsula.”

Mr Xi confirmed: “China and the US have a responsibility to work together.”

After the vote on the resolution, drafted by the US and China, US Ambassador Samantha Power said the sanctions were the toughest yet, Reuters reported.

"Virtually all of the DPRK's (North Korea) resources are channeled into its reckless and relentless pursuit of weapons of mass destruction," she said.

North Korea has sanctions imposed on it by UN since 2006 because of the country's nuclear tests and rocket launches.

By Stefan Paraber for GIA

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