China says upholds United Nations sanctions as North Korea trade rises

“UN Security Council sanctions are not a total ban on shipments”.

North Korea, one of the world’s worst human rights abusers, is continuing to expand its nuclear and ballistic missile threats against the American homeland and our allies, said Senator Marco Rubio.

Senior US officials say that a new round of sanctions related to North Korea is imminent. “Simple accumulated data can not be used as evidence to question China’s severe attitude in carrying out UN Security Council resolutions”, Huang told a news briefing.

While preparations for fresh sanctions are moving forward, tangible new steps by China could prompt Washington to put the measures on hold, the USA sources said.

Monthly figures were more representative of the trend, he said, and China’s imports from North Korea had been “falling sharply for four consecutive months since March”, including by 36 percent in March and 42 percent in April.

China has repeatedly said it is fully enforcing United Nations sanctions on nuclear-armed North Korea and there is nothing wrong with what it terms “normal” trade with Pyongyang, referring to areas not covered by sanctions.

China suspended imports of North Korean coal in February, while imports of iron ore accord with relevant United Nations resolutions, he said.

The legislation gives those that now conduct trade with North Korea a clear choice – either do business with this heinous outlaw regime or do business with the world’s leading economic and military power, he said. Previous releases of Chinese customs data showed that China bought the same amount of iron ore in the first five months of this year as it did in all of last year.

The official further noted the Philippines’ robust relationship with the US, Russia, China Japan as well as a major trading partner of South Korea. Then on July 8, Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping met to discuss concerns on North Korea and the Chinese trade relations. He called out the “nearly 40%” increase in trade in the first three months of the year on Twitter last week.

Xi has made no secret of his disdain for Kim and is clearly frustrated at North Korea’s weapons testing and actions such as the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, the leader’s half-brother who had been protected by China.

The new data reflects China’s attempt to pull off a delicate balancing act between the USA and North Korea, where it wants to prevent the regime collapsing because it worries about what that would mean for regional stability.