White House declares 'murderous regime' North Korea a state sponsor of terrorism

Kim Jong-un 'punishes top military officials for

The US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during a press briefing at the White House on Monday that the US sanctions against North Korea are taking effect as the global community begins to cut off trade with Pyongyang. "Should have happened a long time ago", Trump told reporters at the beginning of a Monday morning Cabinet meeting. Should have happened years ago, ' Trump said.

"Today, the United States is designating North Korea as a state sponsor of terrorism", Trump said.

'As long as there is continuous hostile policy against my country by the U.S. and as long as there are continued war games at our doorstep, then there will not be negotiations, ' 'Our country plans ultimate completion of the nuclear force'. The latest missile test overflew Japan Sept. 15.

North Korea will join Iran, Sudan and Syria on the blacklist.

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Neither Trump nor the State Department specified Monday which acts of terrorism and assassination the North had supported. USA officials allege he was tortured in custody.

In this March 16, 2016, file photo, American student Otto Warmbier, center, is escorted at the Supreme Court in Pyongyang, North Korea.

In February, plans for talks in the United States between former US officials and North Korea were scrapped when the State Department denied a visa for a top envoy from Pyongyang after the murder of Kim's half brother, Kim Jong Nam, in Malaysia.

Trump made the announcement one week after returning from a trip to South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines.

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North Korea was taken off the USA list of state sponsors of terror in 2008 during nuclear negotiations with the George W. Bush administration.

U.S. Representative Ed Royce, the Republican chairman of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, called the decision "an important step in our efforts to apply maximum diplomatic and financial pressure on Kim Jong Un". Former President Barack Obama removed Cuba from the list in 2015.

However, Democratic Senator Edward Markey said the designation "ratchets up the rhetoric" but does nothing to hold the North accountable for its weapons program.

Designation under the above-referenced authorities also implicates other sanctions laws that penalize persons and countries engaging in certain trade with state sponsors.

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