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Trump lists N Korea as 'state sponsor of terror'; new sanctions expected

President Trump said this should have happened a long time ago

Reuters  |  Washington 

North Korea, Kim Jong-Un
File photo of Kim Jong-un

President designated a state sponsor of terrorism on Monday, allowing the United States to impose additional sanctions and penalties against Pyongyang as it continues to pursue nuclear weapons programs.

The Republican president, who has traded personal barbs and insults with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, said the Treasury Department will announce the additional sanctions against on Tuesday.

The designation came a week after Trump returned from a 12-day, five nation trip to Asia in which the US president made containing North Korea's nuclear ambitions a centerpiece of his discussions with world leaders.

"Today, the United States is designating as a state sponsor of terrorism," Trump told reporters at the White House. "Should have happened a long time ago should have happened years ago."

is pursuing nuclear weapons and missile programmes in defiance of UN Security Council sanctions and has made no secret of its plans to develop a missile capable of hitting the US mainland. It has fired two missiles over Japan.

South Korea's spy agency said on Monday may conduct additional missile tests this year to polish up its long-range missile technology and ramp up the threat against the United States.

Some experts, and US officials speaking privately, have argued that does not meet the criteria for the designation, which requires evidence that a state has "repeatedly provided support for acts of terrorism."

Experts also say that the move will be largely symbolic, as is already heavily sanctioned by the United States.

First Published: Tue, November 21 2017. 09:12 IST
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