Australia assigns warship to enforce North Korean sanctions

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An officer says Australia has assigned a guided missile frigate to the East China Sea to boost international efforts to enforce sanctions against North Korea.

Australian Defense Force Chief of Joint Operations, Air Marshall Mel Hupfeld told reporters on Friday the warship with a crew of 230 will be supported by two Australian AP-3C Orion surveillance aircraft based in Japan.

Hupfeld says the Australians would work in cooperation with the Japanese, United States, Canadians and the South Koreas to enforce sanctions.

Hupfeld would not say whether the frigate HMAS Melbourne’s role would be intercepting suspect cargo ships.

President Donald Trump has encouraged U.S. allies to maintain sanctions on North Korea until it denuclearizes as part of what his administration has termed a campaign of “maximum pressure.”

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