UN Security Council Set To Vote On New Sanctions Against North Korea

Korean Central News Agency  Korea News Service via AP File

Korean Central News Agency Korea News Service via AP File

The foreign ministry said Monday that it chose to expel Ambassador Kim Hak-chol because of Pyongyang's repeated flaunting of resolutions by the U.N. Security Council against its nuclear program.

The watered-down resolution does not include sanctions that the USA wanted on North Korea's national airline and the army.

The sanctions approved Monday do ban North Korea from importing all natural gas liquids and condensates.

North Korean hackers are increasing their attacks on cryptocurrency exchanges in South Korea and related sites, according to a new report from security researcher FireEye Inc.

Today, the UN Security Council is expected to vote on a draft resolution tabled by the U.S. to slap additional sanctions on North Korea.

"It's hard to overstate just how devastating a conflict on the Korean peninsula would be", said Representative Eliot Engel, the committee's top Democrat.

"They're pretty capable actors in comparison to other North Korean activity we see", said McNamara.

With more sanctions likely and usage of cryptocurrencies broadening, security experts say North Korea's embrace of digital cash will only increase.

Both Russia and China reiterated their proposal that the United States and South Korea freeze all military drills - which anger North Korea - and asked for a halt in the deployment of the controversial anti-missile system Thaad, in exchange for Pyongyang's cessation of its weapons programmes.

China's United Nations ambassador, Liu Jieyi, called for a resumption of negotiations "sooner rather than later".

There are a few things that made it through the negotiating process - for instance, a ban on textile exports from North Korea, for instance.

Chinese officials have privately expressed fears that an oil embargo could risk causing massive instability in its neighbor. The same factors that have driven their success-lack of state control and secretiveness-would make them useful fund raising and money laundering tools for a man threatening to use nuclear weapons against the US.

China accounts for 90% of North Korea's external trade.

North Korea operates what South Korea believes is an army of hackers expanding its focus from military espionage to financial theft. "This ban will eventually starve the regime of an additional $500 million or more in annual revenues", she said. And last night we saw a new draft resolution that was circulated.

"We wanted those who would be inclined to water down the text to own that position", said the USA official.

Earlier, North Korea said it would not accept any chastisement over its weapons development, which it says is vital to stave off the threat of an American invasion.

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