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No Consent Reached on Peaceful Nuke Use

Posted August. 05, 2005 04:58,   


On August 4, the 10th day of the fourth round of the six-party talks to end the North Korean nuclear program, China, the host country, made contacts with the United States, Japan, Russia, and the two Koreas to draw up agreements on the final draft of the talks’ joint statement.

China is known to be tapping other participating nations’ opinions on North Korea’s assertion that it won’t give up the right to peacefully use nuclear energy, and will confine the objects of dismantlement to “nuclear weapons and related programs” in the joint statement.

The U.S. chief negotiator and Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Christopher Hill said to the press on his way out of hotel, “We are waiting for North Korea to give an answer to the Chinese on the draft,” adding, “There is no need [for the U.S.] to meet them now.”

The U.S. is maintaining its stance of not acknowledging Pyongyang’s right to the peaceful use of nuclear energy. There were no bilateral negotiations between the U.S. and North Korea this day.

The chief South Korean delegate to the talks, Deputy Foreign Minister Song Min-soon, had meetings with his North Korean counterpart Kim Gye Gwan and other deligates from the U.S., Russia, and China to learn Pyongyang’s intentions and convey other participants’ positions to North Korea.

As North Korea keeps raising objections to the final draft, a chief delegates’ meeting slated for August 3 to adopt a joint statement was suspended for two days.

Jong-Koo Yoon jkmas@donga.com