WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that “additional major sanctions” will be imposed on North Korea, one day after Pyongyang staged an intercontinental ballistic missile test.
The president said on Twitter that he had spoken with Chinese President Xi Jinping about “the provocative actions of North Korea. Additional major sanctions will be imposed on North Korea today. This situation will be handled!”
Trump offered no further details.
The announcement comes a few hours before an urgent meeting of the UN Security Council to analyze the situation, a session requested by the US, South Korea and Japan.
However, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson suggested shortly after that that the sanctions could be unilaterally imposed by the US.
Tillerson said that the US has “a long list of additional potential sanctions, some of which involve potential financial institutions, and the Treasury Department will be announcing those when they’re ready to roll those out.”
The White House said in a statement about Trump’s phone conversation with Xi that the US leader made clear “the determination of the United States to defend ourselves and our allies ... (and) emphasized the need for China to use all available levers to convince North Korea to end its provocations and return to the path of denuclearization.”
On Tuesday, Pyongyang launched another test ICBM that traveled some 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) before plunging into the Sea of Japan.
The North Korean regime said that its new ICBM – the Hwasong-15 – was successfully tested and that it is capable of carrying a large nuclear warhead and reaching any target within the continental US.
Before speaking with Xi, Trump spoke by phone with his counterparts in Japan and South Korea – Shinzo Abe and Moon Jae-in, respectively – to discuss Pyongyang’s latest missile test.