U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Sunday told CNN’s “State of the Union” that North Korea would be “destroyed” if it continues with its “reckless behavior,” including the most recent missile launch over Japan in retaliation of the United Nations Security Council sanctions.
Haley also said the situation could be handed over to Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, after exhausting diplomatic channels, and that Mattis would “take care of it.”
And Haley tweeted last week: “We cut 90 percent of trade and 30 percent of oil. I have no problem kicking it to Gen. Mattis because I think he has plenty of options.”
“We wanted to be responsible and go through all diplomatic means to get their attention first,” Haley told CNN on Sunday. “If that doesn’t work, General Mattis will take care of it.”
Haley also said: “If North Korea keeps on with this reckless behavior, if the United States has to defend itself or defend its allies in any way, North Korea will be destroyed. And we all know that, and none of us want that.”
North Korea just last week launched yet another missile, this one an intermediate-range ballistic missile over Japan into the Pacific Ocean.
The North Korean launch came hours after North Korea threatened to blow the United States to “ashes and darkness” and has said it will “sink” the country of Japan, following a United Nations resolution that bans 90 percent of its exports.
The sanctions were passed unanimously this week by the U.N. Security Council following North Korea’s sixth ever successful nuclear missile launch and claims that the country now has a Hydrogen bomb it can place on an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).
The sanctions, while watered down from original drafts, fully ban the country’s textile exports and reduce its oil and petroleum exports. This means about 90 percent of North Korea’s exports are now banned, as well as a complete ban on the country’s overseas laborers that provide nearly $500 million in revenue. Additionally, all foreign investment with North Korea is cut off, and the regime’s assets will be frozen.
“We think it’s just another very small step – not a big deal,” Trump said at the White House last week. “Those sanctions are nothing compared to ultimately what will have to happen.”
The United Nations in August unanimously approved sanctions against North Korea in response to Kim Jong Un’s two successful intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) in July.
Then, North Korea threatened “thousands-fold” revenge on the United States following those sanctions, which cut North Korea’s export revenue by $1 billion, or about a third. The sanctions banned North Korea from exporting coal, iron, iron ore, lead, lead ore and seafood.
North Korea’s sixth nuclear missile test caused a 6.3 earthquake and was roughly five times as large as the bomb that destroyed Hiroshima, Japan. The test came hours after North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un claimed that it now had an H-bomb to put onto its long-range ICBMs.
U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley has said that North Korea is “begging for war,” and that it’s time for the international community to impose the strongest possible sanctions against North Korea.