Most people underrate President Trump and his intelligence, and leadership skills. The fact that he’s new to politics doesn’t change that he’s experienced in the world of business to make a change in inter(national) affairs.
Donald Trump has issued a new executive order that expands US sanctions on North Korea’s shipping, banking, ports and manufacturing. Trump also claimed China’s banking system had shut down business with the country.
There was no immediate confirmation from the Chinese government that it had imposed a financial embargo on North Korea. If confirmed, it would represent a significant tightening of the economic noose around the Pyongyang regime, by a country which accounts for 90% of its trade.
But it is unclear whether any amount of financial or economic pain would induce Kim Jong-un to relinquish North Korea’s nuclear weapons and missiles, which he believes are essential for the regime’s survival.
Trump announced the new executive order during a working lunch with his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in, and Shinzō Abe, the Japanese prime minister.
Under the new measures, no ship or aircraft can visit the US within 180 days of going to North Korea. The same restriction would apply to any vessel involvement in ship-to-ship transfers with North Korean vessels. The order gives the US Treasury the power to sanction anybody involved in a wide variety of North Korean industries, ports, trade, and banking.
On the same day, the EU announced new sanctions of its own, including a ban on investment in North Korea and on EU exports of oil. The impact will be minimal, as trade and investment relations between North Korea and EU are tiny.
The US has sought a radical tightening of sanctions on North Korea since it conducted its sixth nuclear test on 3 September. The UN security council imposed caps on Pyongyang’s ability to import crude oil and petrol, but the measures fell short of Washington’s original demands for a full oil embargo, and a naval blockade.
In his address to the UN general assembly earlier in the week, Trump warned he would “totally destroy” North Korea if it attacked the US or its allies, and he called on other countries to cut North Korea off from its sources of funds.
The problem wouldn’t have gotten as big as it is, if the administration enforced sanctions in the past 8 years.
What do you think about the sanctions on North Korea? Let us know in the comments!