Diplomats: U.S. drafts new sanctions resolution against North Korea

Published July 11, 2017

UNITED NATIONS — The United States has circulated a draft resolution that would impose new sanctions on North Korea following its first test of an intercontinental ballistic missile, two U.N. diplomats said Monday.

The proposed resolution has been circulated to North Korea's closest ally and main trading partner, China, as well as the three other permanent members of the U.N. Security Council — Russia, Britain and France — the diplomats said, who spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because consultations have been private.

North Korea's successful test launch of an ICBM last week was a milestone in its long-term effort to build a missile with a nuclear warhead capable of reaching the United States. President Donald Trump searched for consensus with Asian allies Saturday on how to counter what he called the "menace" of North Korea.

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley told the Security Council last week that the United States is prepared to use military force to defend the country and its allies against a North Korean ICBM if necessary, but she said the Trump administration prefers to use its clout in international trade to address the growing threat.

Both Trump and Haley put the spotlight on China, with the U.S. leader voicing his frustration in recent days that Beijing hasn't done more. Haley said that seven U.N. sanctions resolutions haven't gotten North Korea to change its "destructive course." She stressed that much of the burden of enforcing the resolutions rests with China because it is responsible for 90 percent of trade with its neighbor.

Declaring that it's time to do more, Haley said the U.S. would put forward a new resolution in the coming days "that raises the international response in a way that is proportionate to North Korea's escalation."

China has the ability to pressure Pyongyang, Haley said.

"They know that. We know that, and we need to see some more action going accordingly," Haley said. "And I think the resolution is going to be a really big test on that."