Sanctions push over North Korea’s nuclear test

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Ahead of the meeting, US Ambassador Samantha Power commented: “North Korea is seeking to flawless its nuclear weapons and their delivery vehicles so they can hold the region and the world hostage under threat of nuclear strike”.

China is North Korea’s only major ally and accounts for 80 percent of the country’s trade, and therefore is uniquely positioned to apply political and economic pressure.

The U.N. chief said in an interview with The Associated Press that for nearly 10 years as secretary-general, and before as South Korea’s foreign minister, he tried with “all my talk with North Koreans in any way I can to promote peace and security and reconciliation between the South and the North”.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has hit out at North Korea over its latest nuclear test, labeling it reckless and risky and urging the UN to enforce all possible sanctions against the secretive Asian nation.

If so, Pyongyang has developed a unified design for nuclear weapons that could be used on a variety of its ballistic missiles, including Scuds, mid-range Rodong and Musudan missiles, and submarine-launched missiles, said Kim Dae Young, a military expert at South Korea’s Korea Defense and Security Forum.

“Our nuclear scientists staged a nuclear explosion test on a newly developed nuclear warhead at the country’s northern nuclear test site”, a TV presenter said.

Obama spoke with Park by telephone for about 15 minutes as he flew back from Laos, the presidential office in Seoul said.

“North Korea will have to bear the consequences of its acts and provocations”, he said, adding that more importantly, new sanctions are “indispensable”.

In a January 2015 executive order, the administration also gave itself the authority to sanction any North Korea entity for simply being a North Korean entity.

Professor Tadashi Kimiya, who specialises in Korean issues, told Reuters: “Sanctions have already been imposed on nearly everything possible, so the policy is at an impasse”.

Japan, the United States and South Korea, for their part, need to come up with effective measures to prevent the North Korean “threat” from deteriorating further.

Some outsiders were struck by the name of the agency that announced the nuclear test, something called the Nuclear Weapons Institute, which hasn’t appeared previously in North Korean media. Japan’s foreign minister lodged a protest and Tokyo also sent two military jets to begin measuring for radiation.

But the test Friday – the North’s fifth and most powerful blast yet – eliminates any doubt that that approach has failed and that the North has mastered the basics of detonating a nuclear weapon. Such a yield would make this test, if confirmed, larger than the nuclear bomb dropped on the Japanese city of Hiroshima in World War Two and potentially bigger than that dropped on Nagasaki soon after.

Whatever the state of the program, one thing is clear: The fifth test was the most powerful to date.

“I condemn in the strongest possible terms the underground nuclear test by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK)”, Ban told reporters.

Needless to say, China should firmly implement the sanctions.

North Korea fired three missiles on Monday, September 5.

The activists rallied here against the nuclear test conducted by North Korea on Friday that coincided with its 68th anniversary, EFE news reported.

The country began developing its nuclear weapons program in the late 1980s, and its first test was in 2006.

North Korea has been testing different types of missiles at an unprecedented rate this year, and the capability to mount a nuclear warhead on a missile is especially worrisome for its neighbors South Korea and Japan.

China said it was resolutely opposed to the test but Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying would not be drawn on whether China would support tougher sanctions against its neighbour.

Speaking with some frustration, he said that when it comes to the Korean peninsula, the secretary-general has no mandate from either the U.N. Security Council or the General Assembly, and he has not been able to appoint a special envoy or a special adviser on Korean issues. “We are monitoring and continuing to assess the situation in close coordination with our regional partners”, an NSC statement said.