Trump to ask UN members for help containing Iran, North Korea

Trump to ask UN members for help containing Iran, North Korea

By Luke Vargas   
Published
President Trump shakes hands with Colombian President Ivan Duque after a U.N. meeting on addressing the global drug crisis. September 24, 2018. UN Photo/Mark Garten
President Trump shakes hands with Colombian President Ivan Duque after a U.N. meeting on addressing the global drug crisis. September 24, 2018. UN Photo/Mark Garten

The US is increasingly reliant on international support to contain Iran and North Korea, even as the Trump Administration pulls out of major UN agreements.

UNITED NATIONS  A year after using his U.N. speech to threaten unilateral military action against North Korea, President Trump will take a diplomatic victory lap in remarks on Tuesday and claim credit for kick-starting multilateral diplomatic talks.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says Trump is right to take that credit.

“President Trump’s leadership, combined with efforts to enforce the pressure campaign, has deescalated tensions with North Korea and brought us closer to our final goal: a final, fully-verified denuclearization of the DPRK as agreed to by Chairman Kim Jong-Un.”

And yet, North Korea has taken few steps to denuclearize, even as countries like China and Russia loosen sanctions on the regime. That’s led Pompeo and other top U.S. officials to ask countries to keep isolating North Korea until talks progress.

“Now is not the time to ease pressure.”

That’s not the only thing Trump will ask of fellow governments in his speech before the U.N. General Assembly. The U.S. also wants support in isolating Iran.

“You can bet the President will have well-deserved strong words for the Iranian regime, which is among the worst violators or U.N. Security Council resolutions, if not the absolute worst in the world. He’ll call on every country to join our pressure campaign in order to thwart Iran’s global torrent of destructive activity.”

But in a year in which the U.S. has stepped back from a number of its international commitments   be it on climate change or migration policy   it’s unclear how many favors the Trump administration can call in.

U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley even referenced America’s changed position within the U.N. system compared to just a year ago.

“It’s been an interesting time knowing that since the Secretary-General’s meeting last year, we have pulled out of the Paris Accord, we have pulled out of the Global Compact [on Migration], we have pulled out of the Iran Deal.”

And yet, even as American policies evolve, some things never change, like the overriding feeling at most U.N. summits that this is America’s world  and everyone else is just living in it.

“All of that is to say that the Untied States is determined to be involved in multilateral organizations where we see it, but not in the way that they are mandated on what the United States does, or that infringes on the American people.”

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