Korea warns USA against military pressure over n-programme

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The draft text would also prohibit countries from increasing the current number of North Korean specialists working overseas, and ban new joint ventures with Pyongyang as well as any new investment in current joint projects.

The Security Council is expected to vote on the resolution on Saturday which would deprive Pyongyang of one billion dollars annually in export revenue.

A resolution needs nine votes in favour, and no vetoes by the US, China, Russia, France or Britain, to be adopted.

The proposed new sanctions follow North Korea's first successful tests of intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the United States on July 3 and July 27.

The new draft resolution also adds additional individuals and entities, including the Foreign Trade Bank, a state-owned bank that acts as North Korea's "primary foreign exchange bank" to a United Nations sanctions list.

The United States has been informally keeping Britain and France in the loop on the bilateral negotiations, while US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said China had been sharing the draft and negotiating with Russian Federation.

North Korea strongly condemns and rejects the so-called unilateral sanctions as an attempt by the United States to "apply its federal law to global relations which constitutes a direct challenge to the UN Charter and worldwide law", the spokesperson said.

A second test on July 28 further raised alarm about Pyongyang's drive to develop a missile capable of hitting the USA mainland with a nuclear warhead.

"These are export sectors where this money is viewed as a critical, critical source of hard currency that the North immediately turns around into its fantastically expensive war machine and these just amazingly expensive ballistic missile and nuclear weapons programs", the diplomat said.

The new raft of measures would be the seventh set of United Nations sanctions imposed on North Korea since it first carried out a nuclear test in 2006, but these have failed to compel Pyongyang to change its behaviour. It also put limits on North Korea's trade of goods and labor forces.

South Korea shut down the joint industrial park in February 2016 in response to North Korea's fourth nuclear test and launch of a long-range rocket early a year ago.

According to the diplomat, coal has been North Korea's largest export, earning $1.2 billion past year which was then restricted by the Security Council to a maximum $400 million.

That total is over $1 billion.

Under the draft, countries would be unable to hire any new North Korean workers.

North Korean vessels that are caught violating United Nations resolutions would be banned from entering ports in all countries, under the proposed measure.

The diplomat called the Foreign Trade Bank "a very critical clearing house for foreign exchange".

However, the resolution reportedly does not block crude oil supplies to the regime, a proposal that received most attention. But she has also acknowledged that Russia's engagement on the draft resolution would be the "true test".

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