Speed Reads

all eyes on north korea

America teams up with Russia, China, to pass strict new economic sanctions on North Korea

The United Nations Security Council voted unanimously to put some of the heaviest sanctions yet on North Korea, including limiting oil exports strictly to their current levels and ordering North Korean workers abroad to return home within two years, The New York Times reports. Friday's 15-0 vote marks a significant step in the process because the United States was joined by Russia and China, which historically have hesitated on escalating sanctions against the regime.

"President Trump has used just about every lever you can use, short of starving the people of North Korea to death, to change their behavior," said White House homeland security adviser, Thomas Bossert, earlier this week. "And so we don't have a lot of room left here to apply pressure to change their behavior."

In fact, many experts believe that no amount of economic pressure will convince North Korean leader Kim Jong Un to abandon the country's nuclear program. Nevertheless, the British ambassador to the U.N., Matthew Rycroft, praised the cooperation between nations Friday, saying that the new policies will "make it even harder for the regime to fund the illegal programs, and at the same time ensure we don't make life harder for the poor people of North Korea." Read more about the sanctions at The New York Times.