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Beijing praises 'brave Tillerson' for his verbatim on N. Korea

Beijing praises 'brave Tillerson' for his verbatim on N. Korea

Posted August. 04, 2017 07:15,   

Updated August. 04, 2017 07:22


The U.N. Security Council has once again started to discuss the resolution on bringing new sanctions on North Korea after placing Kim Jong Un on its list of banning import of crude oil and other sanctions. It was known that the reluctant Beijing changed its stance and insisted on negotiating with Washington, whose Treasury aimed to put Chinese trading companies and financial institutions on their sanction list for transacting with North Korea.

Experts claimed that Beijing may have sensed risks, as options on holding military prowess have been surfacing after U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham commented on a TV interview that the U.S. President Donald Trump "would rather go to war to destroy North Korea than allow it to develop a long-range nuclear-armed missile." Another comment that alarmed China was rather strongly determined remark by U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley who said on July 30, "The time for talk is over, and an additional Security Council resolution that does not significantly increase the international pressure on North Korea is of no value." 

Other news outlet explained, "While Chinese companies and institutions on the list are not large enough to represent China, the recent sanction can deal a hard blow on the Chinese economy in the long-term, as the U.S. Treasury plans to expand the list and add additional institutions involved." Experts analyzed that the U.S. started to push ahead its plan to solve the North Korean nuclear issue by leveraging its economic and military competitive edges.

Still, many view that Washington and Beijing will not easily reach an agreement on this issue, as China sees the North Korean nuclear as a strategic leverage to wield influence on the U.S. in the Northeast Asian region, and that Beijing is strongly resistant to the idea that its blood-forged reclusive regime can be toppled by the pressure from the U.S. Therefore, the Trump administration is likely to announce its economic sanction plans against China and start specifying its military options around next week, should the bilateral agreement be derailed this week.

In addition, the extensive new sanctions imposed against North Korea, Russia, and Iran on Wednesday signed by President Trump was also targeted to Chinese businesses and financial institutions dealing with North Korea.

However, it remains to be seen whether the new sanctions may be effective. For starters, crude oil supplied from China to North Korea is managed by government organizations, not businesses. Furthermore, it is nearly impossible to track down employment of North Korean laborers who mostly reside in China and Russia. Moreover, large Chinese banks already stopped dealing with North Korea, and it is impossible to investigate financial transactions made from local Chinese small banks. In a nutshell, the recent sanctions are designed to compile declarative clauses demanded by the international community, put psychological pressure on China and Russia, and ultimately nudge the two nations to voluntarily close their doors on Pyongyang.

Jeong-Hun Park sunshade@donga.com · Sung-Ha Joo zsh75@donga.com