On Tuesday, the US announced that sanctions would be imposed on the two most prominent officials behind the nuclear missile program in Pyongyang. The announcement came at a time when Russia offered to play the role of a neutral mediator between North Korea and the United States. The new measures by the United States are aimed at forcing Kim Jong Un to abandon his nuclear missile program. The totalitarian regime in Pyongyang led by Kim has defied years of multilateral and bilateral embargo to progress with the ballistic missile program aimed at developing a nuclear warhead that has the capability of striking the United States.
The Secretary to the Treasury, Steven Mnuchin, said that his department was targeting the North Korean missile program leaders to isolate Pyongyang through a maximum pressure campaign. Mnuchin noted that the efforts by the Treasury were aimed at achieving denuclearization of the entire Korean peninsula. The announcement has followed a resolution by the United Nations General Assembly on Friday to impose more stringent sanctions on North Korea. On the 29th of November this year, the North Koreans launched an ICBM test that the regime said carried a nuclear warhead and that could strike any target on the mainland in the United States. The embargo was aimed to deprive North Korea of oil imports and foreign exchange earnings from its expatriates working abroad.
A former General of the Air force Ri Pyong-Chol is reportedly holding the position of deputy director of the nuclear ballistic missile program in Pyongyang. Sources from the North Korean government termed the economic sanctions as an act of war and a total blockade to the North Korean economy. The new standoff between Washington and Pyongyang has raised tensions that a further conflict would emerge in the Korean peninsula. The Korean War which was fought between the years 1950 and 1953 marked the first significant battle of the nuclear age and the first in which the United States did not dictate the terms of surrender.
The Korean War was ended by the signing of an armistice in 1953 and led to the death of 35,000 Americans. Top government officials of the Trump administration have said that all options were on the table including the use of force to disarm the totalitarian regime which has killed and starved millions of its citizens. However, some officials have alluded that they would prefer a diplomatic solution to the problem with North Korea.