Pyongyang is threatening “imminent war” in response to the latest batch of sanctions brought against it by the United Nations.
“The latest UNSC ‘resolution on sanctions’ has created the danger of imminent war on the Korean Peninsula, as there are no judicial and institutional mechanisms to avert a war and armed conflicts and the ‘resolution’ is as good as a declaration of war,” the North Korean foreign ministry said in a statement Thursday, according to Yonhap News Agency. “The U.S. and other countries involved in adopting the ‘resolution on sanctions’ will have to be wholly responsible for the ensuing consequences.”
The sanctions Pyongyang was referring to were those brought about by United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2321, a direct response to North Korea’s fifth and most powerful nuclear test on Sept. 9.
Resolution 2321 primarily targets North Korea’s mineral exports, one of its main sources of revenue. A cap has been placed on the North’s coal exports, reducing its annual export revenue by roughly $700 million. Further restrictions have been placed on other metals, such as copper and zinc, cutting another $100 million. The new sanctions are expected to cut North Korea’s $3 billion annual income by about 25 percent, limiting the funding available for militarization and nuclear weapons programs.
The new sanctions also cripple several other sections of the North Korea economy, such as monument production.
The UNSC voted unanimously to approve the resolution and the associated sanctions on Nov. 30. North Korea has since denounced the UNSC resolution as “a criminal document without any legality.”
“The UNSC ‘sanctions resolution’ cooked up by the U.S. and its vassal forces in total denial of the exercise of the right to self-defense, a just and legitimate right of the [Democratic People’s Republic of Korea], is an illegal criminal act,” the state-sponsored Rodong Sinmun wrote Thursday.