UN approves new sanctions against North Korea; US vows to defend itself, allies

Nuclear Threat
Posted at 7:15 PM, Mar 07, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-07 14:22:42-05

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — China's U.N. ambassador is urging calm and a return to negotiations aimed denuclearizing the Korean peninsula today, after Beijing joined the U.S. and the rest of the U.N. Security Council in approving tough new sanctions against North Korea.

China and the United States drafted resolution, sending a powerful message to North Korea that the international community condemns its ballistic missile and nuclear tests — and its repeated violation of Security Council resolutions.

The move sparked a furious North Korea to threaten a nuclear strike against the United States. In Pyongyang, a North Korean general told a massive crowd that the country is ready to fire long-range, nuclear-armed missiles at Washington which he says will be "engulfed in a sea of fire."

The White House says the U.S. is fully capable of defending itself against a North Korean missile attack. Spokesman Jay Carney says the sanctions further isolate North Korea and show its leaders what will happen if they defy the international community.

While North Korea boasts of nuclear bombs, it isn't thought to have the ability to produce a warhead that could be used on a missile capable of reaching the U.S.