Boston (September 14, 2017) - Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), top Democrat on the East Asia Subcommittee of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, released the following statement after media reported another missile test by North Korea over Japan. Senator Markey recently led a Congressional delegation to Japan, South Korea and the China-North Korea border. He has called for increasingly tougher new sanctions to bring the North Korean government to the negotiating table to freeze its nuclear and ballistic missile testing programs.
“The Trump administration’s lack of coherent strategy to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula means North Korea will continue to engage in provocative tests like today’s until we apply the kind of crushing economic pressure that will force it back to the negotiating table. The recent actions by the United Nations are commendable but do not go far enough in depriving North Korea of the economic resources that allow it to continue its dangerous behavior. It is time to cut off all exports of oil to North Korea, end its use of slave labor as a way to generate cash for the Kim regime, and target anyone who enables North Korea’s continuing escalatory behavior. At the same time, we must also commit to utilizing every available diplomatic option, including direct negotiations with Pyongyang, to deescalate tensions so that we can negotiate an end to the North Korea nuclear threat before it erupts into a catastrophic war that could take millions of lives.”