Mnuchin: we must ‘cut off North Korea economically’

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The U.S. is considering “stopping all trade with any country doing business with North Korea,” President Trump told his Twitter followers on Sunday following Pyongyang’s decision to carry out its sixth nuclear explosion at the weekend. He also hinted that other options remained on the table.

Shortly after, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin echoed the president’s sentiment when he appeared on Fox News Sunday.

“I’m going to draft a sanctions package to send to the president for his strong consideration, that anybody that wants to do trade or business with them would be prevented from doing trade or business with us,” Mnuchin told Fox’s Chris Wallace before adding that we must “cut off North Korea economically.”

With regard to the other options the Trump administration may now be considering in the wake of Kim Jong-un’s latest show of strength, Wallace asked Mnuchin what the president meant when he tweeted earlier on in the day that the North Korean dictator only understood “one thing” and wondered if we were “getting closer to that tipping point.”


Mnuchin reiterated that the Trump administration – as well as most world leaders – wished to see a denuclearized Korean Peninsula and that we had reached the point where action was required. However, the Treasury Secretary, who is also a member of the National Security Council, refused to discuss what the administration’s actions would entail. Instead, he explained that the top priority right now was to slap North Korea with a new set of sanctions while stressing that the sanctions adopted so far were not punitive enough.

“There’s a lot we can do to cut them off economically, much more than we’ve done already,” Mnuchin said during the interview.

President Trump later told Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that the U.S. was committed to “using the full range of diplomatic, conventional, and nuclear capabilities” at its disposal.

The U.S. is not the only country calling for additional measures against the rogue regime and it looks as though Russia and China will once again side with the majority when the United Nations try to impose further sanctions upon the rogue regime on Monday.

“The Chinese government resolutely opposes and strongly condemns this [recent blast]. China will work together with the international community to comprehensively and completely implement the relevant resolutions of the Security Council of the UN, unswervingly push forward the denuclearization of the peninsula, and unswervingly maintain the peace and stability of the peninsula,” a statement from the Chinese Foreign Ministry read while the Kremlin confirmed that “the Russian Federation [was] ready to take part in all discussions on North Korea problems within a framework of United Nations Security Council and in other forms.”

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