North Korea sanctions to remain in place says Trump

FILE - In this Dec. 24, 2017, file photo, President Donald Trump turns to talk to the gathered media during a Christmas Eve video teleconference with members of the military at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Fla. Trump has stormed into 2018 in an exceptionally aggressive mood, picking fresh fights with Pakistan and the Palestinians, and touting the size of his "nuclear button" in a threat to North Korea. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

US President Donald Trump has said that the sanctions on North Korea will remain in place. However, he deemed it unnecessary to increase them further.

According to the accounts of White House journalists sent to media via e-mail, Trump said while addressing the media along with his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in at the White House that “we want sanctions to remain in place.”

Saying the existing sanctions against the N Korea are at a “fair” level, Trump added that “I really believe something very significant is going to happen. We could always increase them, but I didn’t want to do that.”

Trump, Kim begin summit meeting in Singapore
North Korea leader Kim Jong Un reaches to shake U.S. President Donald Trump’s hand at the Capella resort on Sentosa Island Tuesday, June 12, 2018 in Singapore. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Wu Haitao, China’s deputy permanent representative to the UN, said on Wednesday that sanctions against N Korea should not impact humanitarian aid to the country as per relevant Security Council resolutions.

For dialogue to continue and make headway, the key is to address the legitimate concerns of the parties concerned in a balanced manner, and advance denuclearisation and the establishment of a peace mechanism for the peninsula by following a phased approach with synchronised steps as a package solution, he added.

The second summit between Trump and North Korea’s top leader Kim Jong-un in late February in the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi ended without an agreement.

Trump told a press conference after the summit that Kim demanded relief from sanctions against Pyongyang “in their entirety” in exchange for denuclearising a “large portion” of the North Korea’s nuclear programme, something the US could not agree to.

Dismissing Trump’s claim, North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho has said that N Korea only proposed partial removal of the sanctions, wanting those impeding the livelihood of their people to be removed first.