The latest Chinese restrictions ban most imports of North Korean coal, iron ore, gold, titanium, vanadium and rare earths — a key revenue source for the mineral-rich North. The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency estimated North Korea's 2013 exports at $4.4 billion, with 65 percent of that going to China and the bulk of it made up of mineral sales.
China's Ministry of Commerce said some imports for civilian use will be allowed so long as they are not connected to nuclear or missile programs. It gave no indication of how large purchases covered by that exception might be.
The announcement also banned sales of jet fuel to North Korea but said aircraft would be allowed to refuel during flights to China.
SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea has determined that North Korea is capable of mounting a nuclear warhead on its medium-range Rodong ballistic missile, which could reach all of the South and most of Japan, a senior government official said on Tuesday.
The government’s assessment, shared in a background briefing with representatives of foreign news media here, followed a recent claim by North Korea that it had “standardized” nuclear warheads small enough to be carried by ballistic missiles. Until Tuesday, South Korean government officials, like most of their American counterparts, had played down that claim.
Will be interesting to see how far the relationship between North Korea and China has frayed. As one of their only patrons in the world North Korea would collapse without their support.
If China is willing to go further it could go so far as to provoke regime change (which is why they will probably not).
...Since Trump was elected the whole world has to deal with the permanent threat of a nuclear attack by a madman, why should America be any different?...
Yes, fire and fury, or does that mean something else where you are?. Trump is substantially more deranged than Kim Jong Un, who is behaving quite rationally. Brutally, autocratically, some would even say savagely, but all commentators who know what they're talking about consider him quite rational....
North Korea threatened Thursday to use nuclear weapons to "sink" Japan and turn the United States into "ashes and darkness," in reaction to the new U.N. sanctions imposed over its nuclear and missile programs.
"The four islands of the archipelago should be sunken into the sea by the nuclear bomb of Juche. Japan is no longer needed to exist near us," said the Korea Asia-Pacific Peace Committee, which is North Korea's official propaganda arm.
This is a conflict which realistically could result in millions of deaths. It's serious.
A former Soviet military officer credited with averting a possible nuclear disaster at the peak of the Cold War has died at the age of 77.
Stanislav Petrov was on duty at a Russian nuclear early warning centre in 1983 when computers wrongly detected incoming missiles from the US.
He took the decision that they were a false alarm and did not report them to his superiors.
His actions, which came to light years later, possibly prevented nuclear war.
Petrov died at his home in Moscow in May but his death has only now been made public.
In an interview with the BBC in 2013, Petrov told how he had received computer readouts in the early hours of the morning of 26 September 1983 suggesting several US missiles had been launched.
"I had all the data [to suggest there was an ongoing missile attack]. If I had sent my report up the chain of command, nobody would have said a word against it," he said.
"All I had to do was to reach for the phone; to raise the direct line to our top commanders - but I couldn't move. I felt like I was sitting on a hot frying pan."
Although his training dictated he should contact the Soviet military immediately, Petrov instead called the duty officer at army headquarters and reported a system malfunction.
If he had been wrong, the first nuclear blasts would have happened minutes later.
"Twenty-three minutes later I realised that nothing had happened. If there had been a real strike, then I would already know about it. It was such a relief," he recalled.
A later investigation concluded that Soviet satellites had mistakenly identified sunlight reflecting on clouds as the engines of intercontinental ballistic missiles.
Petrov, who retired with the rank of lieutenant colonel, died on 19 May but news of his passing became widely known only this month, thanks to a chance phone call.
German film-maker Karl Schumacher, who first brought Petrov's story to an international audience, telephoned him to wish him a happy birthday on 7 September only to be informed by his son, Dmitry Petrov, that he had passed away.
Mr Schumacher announced the death online and it was eventually picked up by media outlets.
North Korea has used overblown rhetoric for years, but has never actually used nuclear weapons, unlike America.