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US formally requests UN sanctions vote on North Korea

Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, speaks on the sidelines with Chinese Ambassador Liu Jieyi while she shakes hands with Russian Ambassador Vasilly Nebenzia after a United Nations Security Council meeting on North Korea, in this September 4, 2017 photo, in New York City. (AFP)
UNITED NATIONS: The United States has formally requested a United Nations Security Council vote on Monday to impose tough new sanctions against North Korea despite resistance from China and Russia.
Washington has presented a draft UN resolution calling for an oil embargo on North Korea, an assets freeze on Kim Jong-Un, a ban on textiles and an end to payments of North Korean guest workers.
Diplomatic sources said Russia and China opposed the measures as a whole, except for the ban of textiles, during a meeting of experts Friday.
“This evening, the United States informed the UN Security Council that it intends to call a meeting to vote on a draft resolution to establish additional sanctions on North Korea on Monday, September 11,” a statement from the US mission to the UN read.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov earlier said it was too early to talk about a vote at the Security Council on new North Korea sanctions, insisting any pressure should be balanced against restarting talks.
“Along with pressure on the North Korean regime to induce it to abandon provocations in the implementation of its nuclear and missile programs, it is necessary to emphasize and increase the priority of efforts to resume the political process,” Lavrov said.
The United States wants tough sanctions to be imposed to maximize pressure on Pyongyang to come to the table and negotiate an end to its nuclear and missile tests.
The proposed raft of sanctions would be the toughest-ever imposed on North Korea and seek to punish Pyongyang for its sixth and largest nuclear test.
Britain has given early backing to the measure.