United Nations imposes fresh sanctions on North Korea over ballistic missile tests

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The UN Security Council unanimously adopted fresh sanctions against North Korea on Friday in response to the country's launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile last month.

North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un on Friday said his country has achieved rapid development in strategic weaponry and poses "substantial nuclear threat to the US", state news agency reported.

It is the third raft of sanctions imposed on North Korea this year and comes as the United States and North Korea are showing no signs they are willing to engage in talks to end the crisis on the Korean peninsula.

The country had also regularly threatened they would destroy South Korea, Japan and the United States and continue to claim that the weapons program is necessary to counter USA aggression.

That will reduce the flow of fuel from a previous ceiling set by the council of two million barrels a year.

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The sanctions, passed on Friday, include a ban on almost 90 percent of refined petroleum exports to North Korea.

United Nations member countries will be obligated to capture, inspect or seize North Korean vessels docked at their ports that are suspected of violating the sanctions.

Those new sanctions banned North Korea from importing all natural gas liquids and condensates.

"We believe maximum pressure today is our best lever to a political and diplomatic solution tomorrow".

Under the new rules, all North Korean nationals working overseas will be forced to return home within 12 months, restricting foreign currency entering the nation.

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U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said after the vote that "the unity this council has shown in leveling these unprecedented sanctions is a reflection of the worldwide outrage at the Kim regime's actions". Japan holds the presidency of the Security Council this month.

The comment comes as tensions have increased over North Korea's nuclear program following its latest test of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) on November 29th.

Washington has been imposing sanctions on the country since 2008, banning the export of goods and services to the country, with little effect.

This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire.

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