News / Asia

North Korea Calls UN Sanctions a 'Crime'

Picture released by North Korea's official KCNA news agency in Pyongyang Mar. 14, 2013 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (C) and military officers watching a live shell firing drill to examine war fighting capabilities of artillery sub-units, whose mission is to strike DaeYeonpyeong island and Baengnyeong island of South Korea.
Picture released by North Korea's official KCNA news agency in Pyongyang Mar. 14, 2013 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (C) and military officers watching a live shell firing drill to examine war fighting capabilities of artillery sub-units, whose mission is to strike DaeYeonpyeong island and Baengnyeong island of South Korea.
Margaret Besheer
— North Korea has written to the U.N. Security Council accusing it of committing “a crime” by adopting new sanctions against it for its February nuclear test.

In a letter dated March 9 and released by the United Nations Friday March 15, Pyongyang’s foreign ministry informed the president of the U.N. Security Council that the March 7 council resolution unanimously imposing new sanctions on North Korea’s nuclear program is a “crime” that has created more tension on the Korean peninsula.

UN Security Council Resolution 2094

  • Condemns in strongest terms North Korea's ongoing nuclear activities
  • Imposes new financial sanctions to block transactions in support of illicit activities
  • Strengthens states' authority to inspect cargo, deny port, overflight access
  • Enables stronger enforcement of sanctions by U.N. member states
  • Imposes sanctions on new individuals and entities
North Korea said the latest sanctions resolution is “clear proof” that the 15-nation Security Council “was abused into implementing the hostile policy of the United States” against Pyongyang. Calling the United States “the arch criminal,” Pyongyang said it was “compelled” to conduct the nuclear test, which the Security Council deemed a violation of international resolutions.

In addition to denouncing and rejecting the new sanctions, which are aimed at stopping North Korea from acquiring any new nuclear or ballistic missile technology, the North said it would “take stronger countermeasures,” and should the United States opt for war it is ready and will “fight it out and win a final victory.”

North Korean Nuclear Tests

2006
  • Carried out underground at Punggye-ri
  • Powered by plutonium
  • Released radioactive materials

2009
  • Carried out underground at Punggye-ri
  • Seismic signals were consistent with a nuclear test
  • Radioactive material was not detected

2013
  • Carried out underground at Punggye-ri
  • Seismic signals were consistent with a nuclear test
  • Estimated to be more powerful than devices tested earlier

U.S. officials have repeatedly said in recent weeks that North Korea’s hostile rhetoric and provocative actions are going to take the country in the wrong direction. Speaking at the Asia Society in New York City on Monday, National Security Advisor Tom Donilon commented on Pyongyang’s recent statements.

“North Korea’s claims may be hyperbolic - but as to the policy of the United States, there should be no doubt: we will draw upon the full range of our capabilities to protect against, and respond to, the threat posed to us and to our allies by North Korea,” Donilon said.

He said the threats from North Korea include the use of weapons of mass destruction and the transfer of nuclear weapons or materials to any other states or non-state entities. Donilon said such actions would be considered a grave threat to the United States and its allies and Washington would hold Pyongyang accountable for the consequences.

The March 7 U.N. Security Council resolution was adopted with the backing of China, North Korea’s main ally. In addition to targeted sanctions against Pyongyang’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs, there are new travel restrictions, expanded financial sanctions, and tighter constraints on the import of luxury goods.

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