Russia, China Delay US Push for Halt of Refined Petroleum to North Korea
Russia and China have requested more time to consider a U.S. request to stop deliveries of refined petroleum products to North Korea, diplomats said Thursday. The U.S. asked a U.N. sanctions committee last week to halt the shipments after accusing North Korea of exceeding a U.N. limit on fuel deliveries through illegal imports. The U.S. claimed the imports go beyond the quota of 500,000 barrels per year allowed under U.N. sanctions and asked the committee to inform all U.N. member nations and the public that North Korea has violated the quota. The U.S. also asked the committee to urge member states to exercise "enhanced vigilance" against Pyongyang's attempts to obtain the products and to prevent ship-to-ship transfers. The quota was among the sanctions imposed by the Security Council last December in response to North Korea's launch of a missile North Korea said is capable of striking anywhere on the U.S. mainland. At the June summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore, Kim agreed to denuclearization. The Trump administration, however, has said sanctions will remain in place until the denuclarization process, which has yet to begin, is completed and verified.