Home South Africa US preparing more sanctions against North Korea, Sullivan says – SABC News

US preparing more sanctions against North Korea, Sullivan says – SABC News

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The United States is working on a new round of sanctions against North Korea, US national security adviser Jake Sullivan said on Thursday, as Pyongyang continues its banned missile development and signals a possible new nuclear test.

“As we speak, we have a new set of sanctions,” he told a conference in Seoul organized by the US-based Center for Strategic and International Studies and the South Korean media group Joong Ang.

Sullivan, speaking via live video link, did not elaborate, but said Washington was seeking to use pressure and diplomacy to persuade North Korea to give up its nuclear arsenal.

Joe Biden’s “north star” of U.S. policy toward North Korea is the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, and he remains firm on that goal while showing flexibility in working with partners on how to achieve it, he said.

He noted the strengthening of cooperation between the United States, South Korea and Japan, which have increased joint military exercises.

The United States is also working on a more “visible” regional presence for its strategic assets, Sullivan said, referring to major weapons such as aircraft carriers and long-range bombers.

North Korea has said denuclearization is not on the table and has accused the United States and its allies of pursuing “hostile” policies, including sanctions, that have left it with no choice but to expand its military.

Sullivan said Washington has no ill will toward North Korea and is open to talks without preconditions.

“Pyongyang rejected this sincere appeal,” he said.

The latest round of US sanctions in October targeted two companies registered in Singapore and a firm registered in the Marshall Islands, which Washington says support Pyongyang’s weapons programs and its military.

Decades of U.S.-led sanctions have not stopped North Korea’s increasingly sophisticated missile and nuclear weapons programs, and China and Russia have blocked recent efforts to impose more United Nations sanctions, saying they should instead be eased to start talks and avoid humanitarian damage.

Sullivan said the administration is under no illusions about the challenges, but that the United States remains committed to holding North Korea accountable.

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