The US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during a press briefing at the White House on Monday that the US sanctions against North Korea are taking effect as the international community begins to cut off trade with Pyongyang.
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Rex Tillerson added that as sanctions take effect, they will increase pressure on the North Korean government that will have to realize it needs to engage in diplomatic talks
“Vietnam they committed that they are going to curtail activities further with North Korea, Malaysia has indicated a curtailment, Singapore has cut off all trade with North Korea, the Philippines have cut off all trade….the Sudanese government have traditionally been buying weapons from North Korea, they now agreed to halt all those purchases as well, so this is taking effect all around the world,” Tillerson said on Monday.
Moreover, the US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that a new package of US sanctions against North Korea would be broader and would affect more entities than punitive measures that have been imposed in the past.
“They are similar to sanctions we have taken in the past. We are just going out much more broadly now to more entities,” Tillerson told journalists.
The Secretary of State added that the move would help to disrupt relations between Pyongyang and third-party countries. He pointed out that North Korea was already experiencing the shortage of fuel and its revenues were down.
Meantime, Tillerson did not reveal any other details of the new sanctions package and reminded that the US Treasury Department is due to make an official announcement on Tuesday.
Washington continues to ask other countries, especially China, to increase pressure on Pyongyang and cut all dealings with it, Tillerson said. Yet it is very difficult to determine whether Beijing is taking actions to curtail oil supply to North Korea, he added.
Earlier on in the day, President Donald Trump put North Korea back on the list of countries the United States considers state sponsors of terrorism. The US president said in his announcement that Pyongyang has repeatedly backed acts of global terrorism, including assassinations on foreign soil.
Meanwhile, Rex Tillerson noted that North Korea’s use of banned chemical weapons was among key factors in the US designation of the country as a state sponsor of terrorism.
The situation on the Korean Peninsula escalated earlier this year after Pyongyang carried out several ballistic missile and nuclear tests in violation of UNSC resolutions. In September, the UNSC adopted its toughest resolution against North Korea yet, restricting oil exports, as well as the country’s access to gas liquids, and banning import of textile products from the Asian nation.
Pyongyang was removed from the US list of state sponsors of terrorism in 2008 by former President George W. Bush’s administration.