Last week, we reported that the US seized a North Korean shipping vessel that violated American law and international sanctions, and that American officials ignored Pyongyang’s complaints.

The North Koreans lodged complains over the seizure to the United Nations.

North Korea stepped up its campaign on Tuesday for the United States to return a seized cargo ship belonging to Pyongyang, warning Washington that it had violated its sovereignty in a move that could affect “future developments” between the countries.

North Korea’s U.N. Ambassador Kim Song held a rare news conference at the United Nations in New York to demand the immediate return of the ship, which the United States said earlier this month it had seized over accusations it was used for coal shipments in violation of U.S. and U.N. sanctions.

“The United States should deliberate and think over the consequences its outrageous act might have on the future developments. Also the United States must return our cargo ship without delay,” Kim said. “We regard it as part of our territory where our sovereignty is fully exercised.”

North Korea’s Chairman Kim Jong Un has threatened to end the Singapore Summit agreement if the U.S. keeps the intense sanctions and does not return its ship. The North Korean UN representative said that the U.S. seized the vessel to bring maximum pressure on North Korea and make the isolated country ”kneel down,” and demanded the United Nations act.

Kim, the ambassador, told reporters that the ship seizure is the ”product of an extreme hostile policy of the United States against the DPRK,” the initials of the country’s official name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. He accused the U.S. of violating international law and the 2004 U.N. Convention on Jurisdictional Immunities of States and Their Property.

Kim reiterated that he has asked Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to take ”urgent measures” to contribute to stability on the Korean peninsula, but refused to answer a question on what measures.

…He ended the news conference saying: ”We’ll sharply watch the reaction of the United States.”

In other news about North Korea, it appears the nation started to export women…as sex slaves in China.

Tens of thousands of North Korean women and girls are trafficked and sold into the sex trade in China where they are forced to endure systemic rape, sexual slavery and cybersex trafficking, according to a new report.

The investigation, by the Korea Future Initiative, has uncovered new and disturbing patterns of horrific sexual abuse perpetrated against trafficked North Korean women and girls in mainland China….

The piece of research found a “complex and interconnected network of criminality” accrues an estimated $105 million annually from “the sale of female North Korean bodies”.

Yoon Hee-soon, the report’s author and a researcher at Korea Future Initiative, said: “The exploitation of North Korean women and girls generates annual profits of at least $105 million for the Chinese underworld. Victims are prostituted for as little as ¥30 Chinese Yuan ($4), sold as wives for just ¥1000 Chinese Yuan ($146), and trafficked into cybersex dens for exploitation by a global online audience.”

And, despite a grave food shortage due to a severe drought, North Korea does not plan to take up South Korea’s offer of food aid.

North Korea is showing no signs of welcoming South Korea’s provision of $8 million (9.54 billion won) worth of humanitarian food aid to millions of its starving citizens. The lack of a response further complicates the nuclear situation on the Korean Peninsula.

The thinking in Seoul is that the aid package will possibly induce the North to return to negotiations. President Moon Jae-in also recently said the aid will help resolve the ongoing deadlock in denuclearization talks between Washington and Pyongyang to some extent.

But there were no signs that the North was changing its stance toward the South when the plan was announced Friday.


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