China says willing to pay the price for new North Korea sanctions

The United Nations Security Council unanimously voted to approve fresh sanctions on North Korea with Russia and China both backing the move

The successful testing of two intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) last month suggested the reclusive North was making technical progress, Japan's annual Defence White Paper warned.

The UN Security Council unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea on Saturday banning exports of coal, iron and iron ore, lead and seafood, which could slash Pyongyang's €2.5 billion export revenues by a third, severely restricting its access to vital foreign currency.

"What this is going to do is send a very strong message and a united message", U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley told NBC's Today show on Tuesday.

In a statement carried by the North's state-run Korean Central News Agency, North Korea's government said the sanctions were a "violent infringement of its sovereignty" that was caused by a "heinous USA plot to isolate and stifle" the country.

North Korea said the latest sanctions infringed its sovereignty and it was ready to give Washington a "severe lesson" with its strategic nuclear force in response to any USA military action.

Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte, who has launched a slew of sweary tirades against the USA in recent months, appeared to take a more conciliatory approach when he greeted secretary of state Rex Tillerson, saying he was a "humble friend" of America.

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They reiterated their mutual commitment to denuclearize the Korean peninsula, the White House said in a statement. The move, which is not yet an official investigation, could lay the groundwork for one.

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So far, efforts by United States president Donald Trump's administration to pressurise North Korea into abandoning its nuclear and missile ambitions have gained little traction. He said the North could still carry out further missile tests or a sixth atomic bomb test in the coming months under its broader weapons development timetable.

North Korea's Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho (back) arrives with Wang Yi to attend the closing ceremony of the 50th Asean Regional Forum in Manila, Philippines, on Aug 8, 2017.

The centerpiece of the United Nations sanctions is a ban on North Korean exports of coal, iron, lead and seafood products - and a ban on all countries importing those products, estimated to be worth over $1 billion a year in hard currency.

It also prohibits countries from increasing the numbers of North Korean labourers now working overseas, bans new joint ventures with North Korea and any new investment in current joint ventures.

Lim, the North Korea expert, said the North will probably squeeze its ordinary citizens to help finance its nuclear and missile programs.

Wang also said the new resolution showed China and the global community's united opposition to North Korea's aggression.

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