We are also asking every country to join in demanding transparency from the North Koreans. A recent incident involving the North Korean ship, the Kong Nam, led the United States to conduct intensive conversations with states in the region to avert North Korea’s efforts to send shipments abroad without declaring their contents. We were pleased that the ship turned around and returned home. The bottom line is this: If North Korea intends to engage in international commerce, its vessels must conform to the terms of 1874, or find no port.
Still, the resolution, which also tightened sanctions on top North Korean officials, has certainly brought some pressure to bear, and it’s good to see that it forms the crux of the U.S. position on the matter. 1874, agreed to by even frequent Pyongyang ally China, represents the best leverage the international community has right now, both because of its own strengths, and, more importantly, because of the consensus that it brought together.