News / Asia

Seoul Welcomes Fresh US Sanctions on Pyongyang

South Korea welcomes additional sanctions the United States will impose on North Korea. They are part of the international effort to restrain the North's illegal nuclear weapons development and other illicit activities.

South Korea's Foreign Ministry says the new sanctions are a positive move, demonstrating the consequences for Pyongyang's bad behavior.

The new sanctions, imposed Monday, target several North Korean companies and government agencies, and four individuals. They are accused of being involved in illicit activities, including acquiring nuclear weapons technology.

U.S. officials stress the new sanctions are not meant to cause hardship for the impoverished North Korean people. Rather they target the flow of luxury items - including automobiles, liquor and gourmet foods - to the country's elite.

Yang Mu-jin, a professor at the University of North Korean Studies in Seoul, calls the new American measures politically symbolic. But, he says, without China's support, they will not be very effective.

Yang says North Korea will likely criticize the sanctions but will not retaliate. Instead it will put more effort on working with Beijing to re-start the six-party talks about North Korea's nuclear weapons programs.

The United States unveiled the expanded sanctions hours after North Korean state media confirmed that leader Kim Jong Il had just visited China for the second time in four months.

A North Korean radio newscast gave the details of the visit and Mr. Kim's discussions with China's President Hu Jintao.

"The top leaders of the two [Communist] parties and the two countries informed each other of the situations in their countries and had a frank exchange of views," the broadcast stated.

The broadcast listed officials accompanying Mr. Kim. But his third son, Kim Jong Un, was not mentioned, in spite of speculation he went along to be introduced to Chinese leaders as Mr. Kim's successor.

The newscast, however, alluded to the issue. It quoted Mr. Kim telling President Hu that he is on "an important historical mission to hand over to the rising generation the baton of the tradition of Korea-China friendship."

Mr. Kim visited China even though tensions on the Korean peninsula remain high because of the sinking of a South Korean navy ship in March. An international investigation blamed a North Korean torpedo for the incident, which Pyongyang denies.

South Korean media report the country's navy will conduct new drills in the Yellow Sea with U.S. forces starting Sunday. Both countries say a series of war games over the past few months are meant to send a message of deterrence to North Korea.

There are recent signs, however, that Seoul and Washington are willing to engage Pyongyang in renewed dialogue.

South Korea Tuesday offered emergency aid to the North after recent flooding there. Seoul also has indicated it will not demand an apology for the sinking of its ship before talks about ending Pyongyang's nuclear programs can resume.

You May Like

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video Survivor Video Testimonies Recount Horrors of Guatemalan Genocide

During a conflict that spanned more than three decades, tens of thousands of indigenous Mayans were killed More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs