SEOUL, Oct. 12 (Xinhua) — South Korea is mulling standalone sanctions against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) over its fifth nuclear test if discussion is prolonged on a new UN Security Council resolution, Yonhap news agency reported on Wednesday citing a government source.
A South Korean government source was quoted as saying that Seoul has a principle to announce its unilateral sanctions toward Pyongyang at a time when the new sanctions can maximize the effect of pressure on the DPRK.
If discussion on the anti-DPRK resolution is lengthened at the UN Security Council, the source said, South Korea can impose its independent sanctions on the DPRK ahead of the UN resolution adoption.
Negotiations for new sanctions on the DPRK are underway among UN Security Council members over Pyongyang's nuclear test on Sept. 9 when the DPRK said it successfully tested nuclear warhead that can be mounted on ballistic missiles.
DPRK'S fifth atomic device test produced an explosive yield equal to 10 kilotons of TNT, becoming the most powerful ever conducted by the country. The detonation came just eight months after the fourth test in January.
South Korean Foreign Ministry spokesman Cho June-hyuck told a Tuesday press briefing that a government-wide review is underway for new sanctions toward Pyongyang based on close cooperation with the United States, the European Union and Japan.
Potential independent sanctions by South Korea may involve financial sanctions, shipping route control, trade goods control and restraint on moves of personnel, according to the Yonhap report.
Seoul and Washington are expected to coordinate and discuss their respective sanctions on Pyongyang when South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se and Defense Minister Han Min-koo visit Washington next week.