Major US allies in Asia welcomed the UN Security Council’s unanimous vote to step up sanctions on North Korea. Japan and South Korea said they were prepared to apply more pressure if Pyongyang refused to end its aggressive development of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles. U.N. member states are now required to halt imports of textiles from North Korea, its second largest export after coal and other minerals in 2016 that totaled 752 million US dollars and accounted for a quarter of its income from trade. The United Nations has imposed a fresh round of sanctions on North Korea after its sixth and largest nuclear test.
The measures restrict oil imports and ban textile exports – an attempt to starve the North of fuel and income for its weapons programmes. Yesterday’s decision was the ninth sanctions resolution unanimously adopted by the 15-member Security Council since 2006 over North Korea’s ballistic missile and nuclear programmes. Meanwhile, four major state-owned banks in China took measures to restrict the financial transactions of North Korean citizens. According to South Korea’s National Broadcaster, NHK World, the banks sent a notification to the North’s embassy in Beijing and its consulate general in Shenyang.