by WorldTribune Staff, December 12, 2017
Diplomats have taken a back seat to tough generals in the Trump administration on geopolitics and foreign policy. But straight-talking Amb. to the UN Nikki Haley has emerged as an effective U.S. voice in marshaling an international response to the ultimate nightmare: rogue state nuclear terrorism.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un has “brought the world closer to war” with last month’s test of an ICBM, Haley said. The ambassador also highlighted shocking abuses including requiring 12-year-olds to attend public executions.
Business as usual must end following the Nov. 29 test, said. It is just the latest in a string of provocations from a regime that also continues “systematic human rights violations and abuses” of its people, she added in pressing member nations at the UN to cut ties with Pyongyang.
Haley said that “over 20 countries from every corner of the globe have restricted or ended their diplomatic relations” as “North Korea’s behavior has become more intolerable.”
“We have never sought war with North Korea, and still today we do not seek it,” Haley said. “And if war comes, make no mistake, the North Korean regime will be utterly destroyed.”
U.S. sanctions “have cut off 90 percent of North Korean trade and 30 percent of its oil. But the crude oil remains. The major supplier of that oil is China.” Haley said.
President Donald Trump in a call with Chinese President Xi said that “we have come to the point that China must cut off the oil from North Korea. That would be a pivotal step in the world’s effort to stop off this international pariah.”
China and Russia blocked a September proposal to impose an oil embargo on North Korea, citing humanitarian concerns.
Haley reiterated the call for China to put new pressure on the Kim Jong-Un regime. “China can do this on its own or we can take the oil situation into our own hands,” she said.
Meanwhile, the UN Security Council on Dec. 11 discussed human rights abuses in North Korea, including torture, starvation and public executions.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said North Korean defectors reported “extremely widespread violations of rights in almost every aspect of people’s lives.”
Hussein said the defectors described the conditions in prisons and labor camps, where people are tortured, forced to work in mines or on construction projects, endure beatings “and are being fed so little they barely survive.”
After the Dec. 11 meeting at the UN, Haley tweeted a photo of her meeting with two North Korean defectors who discussed the abuse they were subjected to when they were returned to North Korea from China.
“The systematic human rights violations and abuses of the North Korean government are more than the cause of its people’s suffering. They are a means to a single end: Keeping the Kim Jong-Un regime in power,” Haley said.
“Defectors have reported that all North Koreans age 12 and older are required to attend public executions – a graphic reminder of consequences of disobedience of the government,” she said.