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The Hindu Vocab 27th Dec 2017

After the sanctions: on North Korea

Diplomacy remains the best option to bring North Korea to disarmament talks

The fresh round of economic sanctions (मंजऊरी) imposed (लागू करना) unanimously (निर्विवादित) by the UN Security Council on North Korea is a predictable (पूर्वानुमेय होने के कारण नीरस) response to mounting (आरोहण) international frustration over the nuclear stand-off. The measures come days after the U.S., echoing suspicions in other countries, charged the North Korean government with the world-wide ‘WannaCry’ cyberattacks in May. The sanctions include an 89% curb on refined petroleum imports into North Korea, stringent (सख्त, कठिन आर्थिक हालत) inspections of ships transferring fuel to the country, and the expulsion (निकालाजाना) of thousands of North Koreans in other countries (who send home crucial hard currency) within two years. Despite the crippling (अशक्त कर देने वाला) nature of the curbs, there is some good news on this imbroglio (गड़बड़). As on previous occasions, Beijing and Moscow were able to impress upon the Security Council the potentially destabilising (अस्थिर करना) and hence counterproductive (प्रतिकूल) impact of extreme measures. This is significant given the intercontinental ballistic (प्राक्षेपिक) missile that Pyongyang launched in November. It was described by U.S. Defence Secretary Jim Mattis as technically more sophisticated (जटिल) than anything witnessed previously, and the North Korean regime’s claim that it could deliver nuclear warheads (स्फोटक शीर्ष) anywhere in North America has been viewed with concern. However, even as China and Russia approved the latest measures, they continued to state their preference for diplomatic engagement. It remains to be seen how much more pressure Beijing can exert upon Pyongyang.

The stated aim of the sanctions regime has been to force North Korea to halt its nuclear programme and start disarmament (निशःस्त्रीकरण) negotiations. In September, North Korea detonated (विस्फोट करना) its sixth underground nuclear device, which it claimed was a hydrogen bomb. That assertion (दृढ़-वचन) remains unverified, but experts believe the explosion was many times more powerful than previous detonations (ध्वनि/विस्फोट). The development has served as a reminder to the U.S. that the scope for military options may be increasingly narrowing. Against this backdrop, a revival of stalled peace negotiations between the P-5 nations and North Korea may be the only realistic alternative on the horizon. The successful conclusion of the 2015 civilian nuclear agreement between the P-5 plus Germany and Iran affords a constructive template (सांचा) to move ahead with North Korea. Certainly, U.S. President Donald Trump has delivered a scathing (हानि पहुंचाने वाला) blow to the Iran deal, even as he stopped short of scrapping it. Iran’s continued compliance with the inspections of the International Atomic Energy Agency may not mean much to Mr. Trump, given his overall distrust of multilateral institutions. But that is no reason why other big powers should not pursue (अनुसरण) the diplomatic effort with redoubled energy. Countries that backed the recently adopted UN nuclear weapons abolition pact should likewise lobby (अपने पक्ष में जनमत तैयार करना) Pyongyang.

1. Sanctions: the approval by someone in authority for the doing of something
Synonyms: allowance, authorization, clearance, concurrence, consent, granting, green light, leave, license (or licence), permission, sufferance, warrant
Antonyms: interdiction, prohibition, proscription, denial, refusal, rejection, revocation, deterrence, discouragement, repression, suppression, ban, embargo, exclusion

2. Imposed: to establish or apply as a charge or penalty
Synonyms: assess, charge, exact, fine, lay, levy, put
Antonyms: remit, abate, diminish, lessen, condone, disregard, excuse, gloss (over), gloze (over), ignore, pardon, abate, diminish, lessen

3. Unanimous: having or marked by agreement in feeling or action
Synonyms: agreeable, amicable, compatible, congenial, frictionless, kindred, harmonious, united
Antonyms: disagreeable, discordant, disharmonious, disunited, incompatible, inharmonious, uncongenial

4. Predictable: to find a basis
Synonyms: ground, hang, base, rest
Antonyms: assume, postulate, premise, presume, presuppose, suppose, establish, found

5. Mounting: a structure that holds up or serves as a foundation for something else
Synonyms: brace, buttress, mount, support, prop, reinforcement, shore, spur, stay, underpinning
Words related: column, pedestal, pilaster, pillar, crutch, peg, post, stake, stanchion, stand, stilt, strut, truss, base, foundation, frame

6. Stringent: not allowing for any exceptions or loosening of standards
Antonyms: acquiescent, compliant, compromising, pliable, pliant, relenting, yielding, easy, easygoing, gentle, indulgent, kindly, lenient, merciful, mild, pampering, soft, spoiling, tolerant, flexible, lax, loose, relaxed, slack
Synonyms: brassbound, cast-iron, exacting, hard-line, inflexible, rigorous, strict, rigid, uncompromising

7. Expulsion: the forced removal from a homeland
Synonyms: banishment, deportation, displacement, expatriation, exile, relegation
Antonyms: repatriation, return, immigration

8. Crippling: to reduce the soundness, effectiveness, or perfection of
Synonyms: blemish, bloody, break, compromise, crab, damage, cross (up), deface, disfigure, endamage, flaw, harm, hurt, impair, injure, mar, spoil, vitiate
Antonyms: doctor, fix, mend, patch, rebuild, recondition, reconstruct, renovate, repair, revamp, ameliorate, better, enhance, enrich, improve, meliorate, perfect, refine, cure, heal, help, rectify, rehabilitate, remedy

9. Destabilising: upset the stability of (a region or system); cause unrest or instability in.
Synonyms: undermine, weaken, impair, damage, subvert, sabotage, unsettle, upset, disrupt, wreck, ruin
Antonyms: strengthen, shore up

10. Counterproductive: not producing the desired result
Synonyms: ineffective, feckless, hamstrung, ineffectual, inefficacious, inefficient, inexpedient
Antonyms: effective, effectual, efficacious, efficient, expedient, operant, ultraefficient, availing, beneficial, helpful, productive, profitable, successful, useful, worthwhile

11. Sophisticated: having many parts or aspects that are usually interrelated
Synonyms: baroque, byzantine, complicate, complicated, convoluted, daedal, elaborate, intricate, involute, involved, knotty, labyrinthian, labyrinthine, complex, tangled
Antonyms: noncomplex, noncomplicated, plain, simple, uncomplicated, oversimplified, simplified, simplistic, homogeneous, uniform, unvaried

12. Disarmament: the reduction or elimination of a country’s armed forces or weapons
Synonyms: demilitarization
Antonyms: armament, militarization, equipment, reequipment, mechanization, mobilization

13. Detonated: to break open or into pieces usually because of internal pressure
Synonyms: blow, blow up, burst, crump, explode, go off, pop
Antonyms: collapse, fizzle, implode

14. Assertion: a solemn and often public declaration of the truth or existence of something
Synonyms: affirmation, protestation, asseveration, avouchment, avowal, claim, declaration, insistence, profession

Antonyms: disclaimer, challenge, dispute, question, confutation, disproof, rebuttal, refutation, contradiction, denial, negation, disavowal

15. Detonations: the act or an instance of exploding
Synonyms: blast, blowup, burst, bursting, explosion, eruption, outburst
Antonyms: implosion

16. Scathing: marked by the use of wit that is intended to cause hurt feelings
Synonyms: acerb, acerbic, acid, acidic, acidulous, acrid, barbed, biting, caustic, corrosive, cutting, mordant, pungent, sardonic, satiric (or satirical), scalding, sarcastic, sharp, smart-aleck, smart-alecky, smart-mouthed, snarky, tart
Antonyms: amusing, droll, merry, playful, sportive, waggish, affable, cordial, genial, gracious, hospitable, sociable, diplomatic, polite, smooth, suave, urbane

17. Pursue: to go after or on the track of
Synonyms: bird-dog, chase, course, dog, hound, follow, run, shadow, tag, tail, trace, track, trail
Antonyms: head, guide, lead, pilot

18. Lobby: An organized attempt by members of the public to influence legislators.
Synonyms: campaign, crusade, press, push, drum up support, speak, clamour, ask, call, drive, promote, advocate, recommend, argue in favour of, plead in favour of, speak in favour of, champion, urge, insist on, demand


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