North Korea sanctions bring US and China together

The United States is calling on China to do more as the mandate of the UN panel tasked with monitoring North Korea’s sanctions violations expires this month.

“Beijing can do more to combat North Korea’s sanctions-busting efforts in PRC territorial waters, repatriate North Korean workers earning income in PRC territory, and shut down their supply networks,” a US State Department spokesperson said.

The US official also reacted to remarks by Liu Pengyu, spokesman for the Chinese Embassy in Washington, who said, “The United States needs to stop increasing pressure and sanctions, abandon military deterrence, and take effective steps to restart meaningful dialogue.”

The US spokesperson, who requested anonymity due to ministry policy, said Washington has sent messages to Pyongyang that it is seeking dialogue “in a variety of ways, including through third parties and directly, verbally and in writing”. However, North Korea has given no indication that it is interested in engaging.

Sanctions strengthen Korea

Kim Un Chol, the North Korean Foreign Ministry’s deputy minister for US affairs, said in a statement carried by state-owned KCNA that Washington’s attempt to “revive worn-out sanctions and pressure North Korea” would be met with a military response: “If the US introduces a new version of sanctions against North Korea, North Korea would get a new opportunity, which is necessary for the US to recalibrate its power upward, which it fears the most. North Korea is a state entity that grows stronger in the face of tougher sanctions and pressure.”

US to launch new North Korea sanctions monitoring regime by May