News / Asia

US Asks South Korea to Cut Iran Oil Imports

Activists chant slogans during a news conference denouncing U.S. sanctions on Iran in front of the foreign ministry, where the U.S. State Department's special adviser for nonproliferation and arms control, Robert Einhorn is to meet South Korean Deputy For
Activists chant slogans during a news conference denouncing U.S. sanctions on Iran in front of the foreign ministry, where the U.S. State Department's special adviser for nonproliferation and arms control, Robert Einhorn is to meet South Korean Deputy For

South Korea, the world's fifth largest importer of oil, says more discussions are necessary before it can make a decision on cutting purchases of Iranian crude oil.  The United States is hoping its ally will join the sanctions campaign meant to put pressure on Iran to rein in its nuclear program. 

The South Korean government finds itself in a dilemma regarding Iran.

As a meeting got underway Tuesday with American officials here, the South Korean deputy foreign minister, Kim Jae-shin, said that Seoul shares Washington's growing concern about Iran's nuclear development.

"[The] recent situation related to [the] Iranian nuclear issue has been getting worse since we met last month. But I assure you, once again, that the [South] Korean government is committed to strongly support and participate in international efforts to resolve this issue," Kim said.

But Kim also made clear that tougher action is controversial in South Korea. "Many Koreans are quite worried about that further strengthening sanctions against Iran at this time may destabilize the international market of crude oil and, accordingly, bring about some adverse effect on the [South] Korean economy as well," Kim stated.

The U.S. State Department's special adviser for non-proliferation and arms control, Robert Einhorn, is leading the American delegation to Seoul.  He says the sanctions on Tehran will also send a message to North Korea, which is pursuing nuclear programs, as well, in defiance of international agreements.

"The ROK [South Korean] government is a global player in this regard. It knows that the situations in Iran and in North Korea are related. I think progress on one will help us achieve progress on another," Einhorn said.

The two Koreas have no diplomatic relations and have remained technically at war since three years of devastating combat in the early 1950s. The United States maintains more than 28,000 troops in South Korea to help defend it.

But South Korea is reliant on imports for all of its crude oil and 250,000 barrels a day arrive from Iran.

The U.S. team next visits Tokyo to apply the same pressure on another key economic and military ally in the region.

Japan, also heavily dependent on imported crude, has been sending conflicting signals about whether it will support further sanctions on Iran.

The sanctions are intended to pressure Tehran into serious negotiations over its nuclear program.  A number of nations believe Iran is trying to develop nuclear weapons.  The Islamic Republic contends its nuclear development is for peaceful purposes, not to make bombs.

You May Like

Ferguson Grand Jury Decision Unlikely Before Monday

Tension builds over possible indictment of white police officer in shooting death of black teen More

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

President Poroshenko compares Soviet-era ‘genocide’ to current Russian-backed rebels’ fight in east More

S. Philippines Convictions Elusive 5 Years After Election-related Killings

Officials vowed to deliver justice as the nation marked the anniversary of the country's worst political massacre that left 58 dead, more than half media 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.
New Skateboard Defies Gravityi
X
November 21, 2014 5:07 AM
A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid