The UN Security Council unanimously adopted a new set of draconian US-drafted sanctions on North Korea that will further strangle its energy supplies and tighten restrictions on smuggling and the use of North Korean workers overseas.
Nikki Haley, the US Ambassador to the UN, claimed that the new sanctions, levied in response to Pyongyang's November 29 ballistic missile test, went even further than sanctions passed in September that, at the time, were called the toughest yet.
"Today, we cut deeper," Haley said. She said that the UN had repeatedly offered Pyongyang a choice and repeatedly, in its continued missile tests, the regime had "chosen the path of isolation."
Hailing the unity of the Security Council vote and referring to leader Kim Jong Un, Haley said that, "we will continue to match the Kim regime's choice of aggressive action with actions of international sanctions." North Korea, she said, is "this most tragic example of evil in the modern world."
Resolution 2397 cuts exports of gasoline, diesel and other refined oil products by a total of 89%, Haley said.
The resolution also bans exports of industrial equipment, machinery, transportation vehicles and industrial metals to the DPRK. It requires countries using North Korean laborers to send them back home within 12 months.
The resolution also requires countries to stop ships from illegally providing oil to North Korea through ship-to-ship transfers and prohibits them from smuggling North Korean coal and other prohibited commodities by sea.