N. Korea Says US Will Pay for Provocative Actions Against Regime

Kristopher Drake
November 24, 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to label the North as a "sponsor of terror" came nine years after George W. Bush, then the president, ordered removal of the North from the State Department's list of nations cited for egregious violations of norms of global behavior.

Pyongyang also said on Wednesday that putting North Korea back on the terrorism blacklist will only strengthen its resolve to further develop the communist country's nuclear weapons programme.

"In addition to threatening the world by nuclear devastation, North Korea has repeatedly supported acts of worldwide terrorism, including assassinations on foreign soil", Trump told reporters at the White House. Air China last cancelled flights to North Korea in April, citing low customer demand, but resumed them soon after.

Trump warned that the terror designation and sanctions announcement would be part of a series of moves over the next two weeks to reinforce his "maximum pressure campaign" against Kim Jong-Un's regime.

It said the US action shows North Korea should continue to "keep the treasured nuclear sword in our hands more tightly" to protect itself from American hostility. But the unilateral measures, analysts said, only prevent USA companies and banks from doing business with those sanctioned, which was already happening in practice. In recent months, the North conducted its most powerful nuclear test yet and tested a pair of intercontinental ballistic missiles that could potentially reach the USA mainland if perfected.

Trump's recent decision, however, seemed to have only increased the months-long tensions between the two sides.

Literally, it means North Korea would join Iran, Sudan and Syria on the list of state sponsors of terror. Washington removed Pyongyang from the list in 2008 to reward it for progress on dismantling its nuclear programs under a six-party deal, which it later violated. The spokesperson noted that their actions included expulsion of North Korean workers and diplomats.

In the country's first public response to its return to the American blacklist, the official Korean Central News Agency said North Korea has no connection to terrorism and does not care "whether the USA puts a cap of "terrorism" on us or not".

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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