President Donald Trump dismissed the latest United Nations sanctions on North Korea as insignificant.
After North Korea tested another intercontinental ballistic missile in late July, the UN Security Council approved a new sanctions resolution punishing the rogue nation, increasing the pressure. Trump celebrated the resolution as “the single largest economic sanctions package ever on North Korea.”
But, the president’s response to Monday’s unanimous approval of a new sanctions resolution in response to North Korea’s sixth nuclear test was less enthusiastic.
“We think this is just another small step — not a big deal,” Trump explained,”[Secretary of State Rex Tillerso] and I were just discussing not knowing if it has any impact, but it’s nice to get a 15 to nothing vote.”
“Those sanctions are nothing compared to ultimately what will have to happen,” he added.
North Korea has been dealing with sanctions for over a decade, but the country’s nuclear march has been undeterred. North Korea possesses an ICBM that can strike parts, if not most, of the continental U.S., and a little over a week ago, the North successfully tested a staged thermonuclear device which it intends to mount on its newest long-range missile.
When it comes to sanctions, there are two prevailing opinions. One, the sanctions required to curb North Korea’s nuclear ambitions are not being imposed on the regime, either because certain countries help the North evade sanctions or because the sanctions are simply not tough enough to do the trick.
The Trump administration has also repeatedly said that “all options are on the table,” including the military option. For the time being, Trump and other officials are hesitant to use force, recognizing that such a conflict would be “tragic on an unbelievable scale,” to use the words of Secretary of Defense James Mattis.
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