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U.S. welcomes UAE breaking ties with N. Korea

2017/10/13 07:04

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WASHINGTON, Oct. 12 (Yonhap) -- The United States on Thursday welcomed the United Arab Emirates' decision to break ties with North Korea over its nuclear weapons program.

The UAE announced it will terminate the missions of North Korea's non-resident ambassador and its own envoy to Pyongyang. The Arab nation will also stop issuing new visas and business licenses to North Koreans.

"Very happy to hear that," State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said during a press briefing. "There are many countries that are taking those steps that we have asked those countries to take."

   The U.S. has rallied the international community to sever ties with the North to further isolate the regime and force it to give up its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs.

The U.N. Security Council unanimously adopted two sanctions resolutions against Pyongyang after its long-range missile tests in July and sixth nuclear test in September.

A growing number of countries have also expelled North Korean diplomats and scaled back economic ties.

"This is something that is a key part of Secretary (of State Rex) Tillerson's pressure campaign," Nauert said.

Thousands of North Koreans reportedly work in the Middle East to earn foreign currency to fund the regime's weapons programs.

This Yonhap file photo shows State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert. (Yonhap) This Yonhap file photo shows State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert. (Yonhap)

hague@yna.co.kr

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