United Nations, Jul 5 (EFE).- The United States on Wednesday in the United Nations demanded that international pressure be increased on North Korea, warning that – if necessary – it is ready to use military force to respond to the threat posed by Pyongyang, although that stance was opposed by Russia and China, who insisted on negotiation.
Washington’s UN ambassador, Nikki Haley, announced that her country in the coming days will present a resolution in the Security Council for the body to toughen sanctions against North Korea.
That move comes in response to the intercontinental ballistic missile test Pyongyang carried out on Tuesday, a type of projectile that could reach Alaska.
The launching of an ICBM is a “clear and sharp military escalation,” said Haley, adding that the North Korean regime says openly that its missiles are intended to strike cities in the US, South Korea and Japan with nuclear warheads, and now they appear to have the ability to do so.
Given that situation, “The US is prepared to use the full range of our capabilities to defend ourselves and our allies,” Haley said. “One of our capabilities lies with our considerable military forces. We will use them if we must, but we prefer not to have to go in that direction.”
Haley also threatened to use US trade power against Pyongyang and against other nations that “are allowing, even encouraging, trade with North Korea in violation of UN Security Council resolutions. … Such countries would also like to continue their trade arrangements with the United States. That’s not going to happen.”
She also said that China bears a large share of the responsibility for implementing sanctions against North Korea, given that Beijing is Pyongyang’s largest trading partner, and the US insists that China put pressure on Kim Jong-un in that way.
In the face of Washington’s demands, both China and Russia have indicated they are reluctant to impose new sanctions and insisted that a negotiated solution is the only acceptable outcome to the crisis.
“Sanctions cannot be a political cure-all,” said Russian Deputy Ambassador to the United Nations Vladimir Safronkov, adding that any attempt to “economically strangle” North Korea would be “unacceptable.”
China and Russia have jointly proposed that North Korea might suspend its nuclear tests in exchange for the US and South Korea halting their military maneuvers in the region with an eye toward reducing tensions and allowing progress to be made in negotiations.
The Donald Trump administration, however, has rejected that idea, for now, and says that it must see positive steps by Pyongyang first.