SEOUL/UNITED NATIONS – US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said Monday that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was “begging for war” as she urged the UN Security Council to adopt the strongest sanctions measures possible to stop Pyongyang’s nuclear program.
Speaking at a Security Council emergency meeting, Haley said North Korea’s sixth nuclear test was a clear sign that “the time for half measures” from the UN had to end.
“Enough is enough,” Haley said. “We have taken an incremental approach, and despite the best of intentions, it has not worked.”
Haley began her statement by ticking through all of the resolutions the Security Council has passed in response to North Korea’s provocations over the past two-plus decades, making the point that the UN has been united condemning Pyongyang but the efforts have not managed to stop its nuclear progress.
She said the US does not want war but will defend itself when North Korea is issuing threats with missiles pointed at US territories.
Seoul steps up military response to North Korea's nuclear test
Seoul steps up military response to North Korea’s nuclear test
“War is never something the Unites States wants — we don’t want it now,” Haley said. “But our country’s patience is not unlimited. We will defend our allies and our territory.”
At the conclusion of the meeting, Haley said that the US would circulate a resolution in response to the nuclear test, with plans for a vote on it next week.
“I think that North Korea has basically slapped everyone in the face in the international community that has asked them to stop,” Haley said.
While details of a resolution weren’t discussed on Monday, South Korea’s Ambassador to the UN Cho Tae-yul said it had to be “truly biting.”
“Now is the time to take measures that are strong and robust enough to compel North Korea to seriously engage in dialogue,” he said. “The new resolution must include not only additional measures to further block funds that could possibly flow into North Korea’s illegal nuclear program, but also truly biting and robust measures that Pyongyang finds very painful.”