Trump declares North Korea a state sponsor of terror

Trump declares North Korea a state sponsor of terror

Trump declares North Korea a state sponsor of terror

President Donald Trump, in the latest demonstration of increased tensions on the Korean Peninsula, placed North Korea back on the list of state sponsors of terrorism. At the start of a meeting of the US Cabinet in the White House, Trump accused the DPRK administration of sponsoring 'acts of International Terrorism.' This decision was produced one week after the return of the US President from his Asian tour to five countries: Japan, Republic of South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines.

'Should have happened a long time ago.

"It's a purely symbolic move by the Trump administration to show that it's being as tough as possible when it comes to North Korea, but in practice the US, with the recent legislation that Congress passed in August and the designation from the U.N. Security Council, can already impose massive wide sanctions on the North Korean economy as well as against other countries doing business with North Korea", Fuchs says. Trump has constantly tweeted about North Korea's threat to the US because the nation continues to pursue nuclear weapons and test ballistic missiles.

USA officials involved in the internal deliberations said there was no debate over whether the slaying of half-brother Kim Jong Nam was a terrorist act.

The move returns North Korea to the list of countries the US views as state sponsors of terror for the first time since 2008.

The designation places restrictions on trade with North Korea that are essentially already in place.

The effort to reinstate North Korea to the terror list intensified after American college student Otto Warmbier died in June, shortly after being released from North Korean custody.

North Korea's Nuclear Missile Program Explained- Part 2 Military Options
North Korea's Nuclear Missile Program Explained- Part 2 Military Options

North Korea is pursuing nuclear weapons and missile programs in defiance of U.N. Security Council sanctions and has made no secret of its plans to develop a nuclear-tipped missile capable of hitting the USA mainland. North Korea's state media said Kim inspected a hydrogen bomb.

Under sanctions legislation signed by Trump in August, the State Department was required to report to Congress earlier this month whether it will re-designate North Korea.

Although tragic, the Warmbier case does not seem to meet the statutory criteria for global terrorism, says Daniel Pinkston, who specializes in Northeast Asian security issues at Troy University in Seoul.

But "those odds are basically at zero anyway", Pinkston says. "Putting them back on accomplishes nothing", Lt. Col. Eric C. Anderson, a retired U.S. Air Force Intelligence Officer who spent most of his career focusing on North Korea, told Newsweek".

"If you're on the list, the USA can not vote for you on a World Bank loan, for example, and can not sell you military equipment".

In the end, though, he says he "wouldn't lose any sleep" if Pyongyang were re-added to the list.

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