The North Korean state media on Monday slammed the latest round of UN sanctions and vowed to exact “thousands-fold” revenge against the US.
The UN Security Council on Sunday unanimously adopted new sanctions in response to Pyongyang’s long-range ballistic missile tests on July 4 and July 28.
Pyongyang also vowed that the tough new sanctions would not stop it from developing its nuclear arsenal, as it rejected talks.
The message of defiance was the first major response to the US-drafted sanctions which could cost North Korea $1 billion a year.
The North’s sole major ally China, accused by the US of doing too little to rein in Pyongyang, piled on the diplomatic pressure by vowing to fully implement the new sanctions. “China will for sure implement that new resolution 100 percent, fully and strictly,” foreign minister Wang Yi said.
“We will under no circumstances put the nukes and ballistics rockets on (the) negotiating table,” North Korean foreign minister Ri Yong-Ho said in a statement released in the Philippine capital Manila where he was attending a regional security forum.
“Neither shall we flinch even an inch from the road to bolstering up the nuclear forces chosen by ourselves unless the hostile policy and nuclear threat of the US against the DPRK (North Korea) are fundamentally eliminated.”
In an earlier statement released via its official KCNA news agency, North Korea threatened to make the United States “pay the price for its crime... thousands of times” for drafting the sanctions.
Mr Ri was among two dozen ministers attending the security forum, including the Chinese foreign minister, US secretary of state Rex Tillerson and top diplomats from other Asia-Pacific nations.
For his part, Mr Tillerson ruled out a quick return to dialogue with North Korea, saying Washington would only consider talks if Pyongyang halted its ballistic missile programme....