Senators eye sanctions after North Korea's claimed nuclear test

Greg Nash

Senators from both parties are pushing for stronger sanctions against North Korea after the country said it detonated a hydrogen bomb.

"The administration should impose the toughest and broadest possible sanctions against North Korea and those who aid the regime's illicit activities," Sen. Kelly AyotteKelly AyotteTim Kaine backs call to boost funding for Israeli missile defense Clinton brings in the heavy hitters Kasich doesn't regret skipping convention MORE said in a statement.

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The New Hampshire Republican, who has made national security a central part of her reelection campaign, added that the United States must strengthen its missile defense and intelligence sharing with South Korea and Japan.

North Korea announced on Wednesday morning that it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb. The White House has disputed that claim, but if true, it would be a violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions and an advancement of the country's nuclear capabilities.

Ayotte, who blamed the test on President Obama's foreign policy, is the latest lawmaker to call for tougher sanctions against the isolated Asian country.

Sen. Ben CardinBen CardinTim Kaine backs call to boost funding for Israeli missile defense Democratic National Convention event calendar Bernie’s ‘revolution’ marches to Philly MORE (D-Md.), ranking member of the Foreign Relations Committee, and Sen. Robert MenendezRobert MenendezTim Kaine backs call to boost funding for Israeli missile defense GMO labeling bill advances in the Senate over Dem objections Overnight Finance: Trump threatens NAFTA withdrawal | Senate poised for crucial Puerto Rico vote | Ryan calls for UK trade deal | Senate Dems block Zika funding deal MORE (D-N.J.) called on Congress to pass new sanctions legislation in the wake of the test.

Menendez introduced legislation last year with Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamTrump: 'I hope' Russia is able to get Clinton's emails Syria activists cheer Kaine pick Vulnerable GOP senators praise Kaine MORE (R-S.C.) pushing the administration for tougher sanctions against North Korea and its supporters.

Cardin and Menendez both said, separately, that the Security Council should impose its own penalties on North Korea.

"Moreover, given North Korea’s actions, the United States and our allies must also take additional steps to combine effective sanctions with appropriate countermeasures," Cardin added.

Sen. Bob CorkerBob CorkerTrump starts considering Cabinet Trump's secret weapon is Ivanka Senate Dems introduce Iran sanctions extension MORE (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, said he would work with Cardin and Menendez, as well as Sen. Cory GardnerCory GardnerTim Kaine backs call to boost funding for Israeli missile defense Behind the scenes on Day 2 of the Republican convention Lobbyists bolting Trump convention early MORE (R-Colo.) to "bring further pressure to bear" on the North Korean government. 

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