Go to contents

North Korea Willing to Dismantle All Nuclear Programs Only after U.S. Threat Is Removed

North Korea Willing to Dismantle All Nuclear Programs Only after U.S. Threat Is Removed

Posted July. 28, 2005 11:38,   


The delegations at the fourth round of the six-party talks made keynote speeches at the general meeting on the second day of the talks in Beijing on Wednesday, stating the stance of their respective nations on the North Korean nuclear issue, and afterwards launched into negotiations.

North Korea and the U.S. showed a big difference in opinion as they have in the past, signaling that the negotiations would not set sail smoothly.

North Korea`s Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan indicated in his keynote speech that North Korea is willing to renounce all its nuclear programs if the threat from the U.S. is eliminated and the North Korea-U.S. relations are normalized.

But Kim asserted in relation to the scope of denuclearization that a clear “North and South Korea denuclearization” should take place. He also claimed that the issues of the U.S. providing South Korea with nuclear umbrella and dismantling nuclear weapons in South Korea should be discussed in the talks.

In order for that to happen, Kim is said to have argued, the U.S. needs to put an end to the hostile relationship with North Korea, implement a legal and institutional mechanism for peaceful coexistence, and guarantee an unconditional “non-use” of nuclear weapons.

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Christopher Hill proposed that North Korea dismantle all its nuclear weapons and programs with effective verification, while other party nations provide security guarantee and implement economic cooperative measures such as trade and investment.

Hill also said that the U.S. is ready to discuss in-depth the proposal it made in the third round of the talks last June and suggested reaching an agreement on the core principles on the North Korea nuclear program dismantlement and compensation at this round of talks.

Hill emphasized that North Korea’s missiles and human rights issues need to be addressed as well. He said that if the proposal is accepted, the U.S. would start normalizing relations with North Korea.

Song Min-soon, the deputy minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of South Korea, proposed that the party nations adopt the so-called “word for word, action for action” principle. He suggested that the party nations first reach a verbal agreement and then implement the principles of North Korea’s nuclear program dismantlement. Under the proposal, North Korea would dismantle its nuclear programs while the other party nations provide subsequent or simultaneous compensation to the North.

Jong-Koo Yoon Hyung-June Park jkmas@donga.com lovesong@donga.com