Trump declares North Korea ‘State Sponsor’ of Terrorism

In a series of measures toughing down on North Korea, US President Donald Trump has put North Korea back on the list of countries that are believed to have continually provided support for acts of international terrorism.

Stating his intentions in a cabinet meeting yesterday, Trump also announced that it would mean ‘very large’ sanctions would be imposed upon the country. Today, both South Korea and Japan declared their approval to the move stating that it put North Korea under more pressure to stop their nuclear programme.

Yesterday, a special security adviser to the South Korean president told local reporters that the measure seemed more ”symbolic than substance”.

It comes a week after Trump returned from a 12-day trip to Asia with North Korea’s nuclear capabilities the focus of his attention. North Korea joins three other nations — Iran, Sudan and Syria — on the State Department’s list of state sponsors of terrorism. North Korea was first added to the list in 1988, and then removed in 2008 as part of negotiations with the US government of George W Bush.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson pointed to the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, the half-brother of his brother and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, as a key factor in North Korea being placed back on the list. He did also concede that they were ‘largely symbolic’ compared to the level of sanctions already in action against North Korea.

Tillerson has said that he still hopes for a peaceful resolution, but it is expected that this news will setback talks between the two countries as regards the nuclear disarmament of North Korea.

President Trump spoke of the death of Otto Warmbier, the American college student who died on returning to the US after lengthy imprisonment in North Korea, as well as “the countless others so brutally affected by the North Korean oppression.”

North Korea continue to defy the numerous sanctions that have been imposed upon them by the UN Security Council.

 

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