China said on Saturday that it was suspending all imports of coal from North Korea as part of its effort to enact United Nations Security Council sanctions aimed at stopping the country’s nuclear weapons and ballistic-missile program.Kim Jong-un has been sticking his finger in China's eye for awhile. Reports of posts on Chinese social media have taken the murder of Kim Jong-nam as a direct insult to China, since he was living under Chinese protection. That groundswell of public opinion, more than anything else, may have forced China to retaliate.
The ban takes effect on Sunday and will last until the end of the year, the Chinese Commerce Ministry said in a brief statement posted on its website on Saturday. Chinese trade and aid have long been a vital economic crutch for North Korea, and the decision strips North Korea of one of its most important sources of foreign currency.
Coal has accounted for 34 percent to 40 percent of North Korean exports in the past several years, and almost all of it was shipped to China, according to South Korean government estimates.