Beijing said it will stop importing North Korean coal until the end of 2017 [Reuters]
Washington Post: China suspends North Korean coal imports, striking at regime’s financial lifeline
BEIJING — China will suspend all imports of coal from North Korea until the end of the year, the Commerce Ministry announced Saturday, in a surprise move that would cut off a major financial lifeline for Pyongyang and significantly enhance the effectiveness of U.N. sanctions.
Coal is North Korea’s largest export item, and also China’s greatest point of leverage over the regime.
The ministry said the ban would come into force Sunday and be effective until Dec. 31.
China said the move was designed to implement November’s United Nations Security Council resolution that tightened sanctions against the regime in the wake of its last nuclear test.
But experts said the move also reflected Beijing’s deep frustration with North Korea over its recent missile test and the assassination of Kim Jong Un’s half brother in Malaysia.
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WNU Editor: The missile tests are bothering China because of South Korea's and the U.S. response to it (i.e. deployment of missile defense) But this assassination was the final straw .... Kim Jong-nam: Will killing derail North Korea-China ties? (BBC). And yes .... this Chinese suspension of coal is going to hurt North Korea.
Update: Yes .... that is also how I see it .... China Message to Trump With North Korea Coal Ban: Let's Deal (Bloomberg).
More News On China Suspending All Imports Of Coal From North Korea
China suspends coal imports from North Korea over missiles -- AP
China to suspend all imports of coal from North Korea -- Reuters
China halts North Korea coal imports after missile test -- AFP
China piles pressure on North Korea by banning coal imports -- BBC
China to suspend coal imports from North Korea -- Al Jazeera
China Suspends Coal Imports From North Korea, Dealing A Blow To Pyongyang -- NPR
China bans all coal imports from North Korea amid growing tension -- CNN
China bans all coal imports from North Korea, severing major financial lifeline for regime -- The Independent
China Just Took a Big Swing at North Korea’s Economy -- Lucinda Shen, Fortune