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North Not Ready to Resume 6-Way Talks

Posted December. 05, 2005 07:09,   


The timing of the fifth round of six-party talks is still uncertain. The Japanese Sankei Shimbun reported yesterday that North Korea conveyed its intention to refuse the resumption of the six-party talks to the U.S., saying that steps with the U.S. to settle the counterfeit note issue had not yet been resolved.

“North Korean UN officials informed the U.S. government that the North will not participate in the six-party talks until the North’s chief negotiator Kim Kye Gwan can have a meeting with Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill,” the Sankei Shimbun report said, citing diplomatic sources in Washington.

The paper added that it was reported that North Korea made public its intention to deny unofficial conversations in Jeju in December as suggested by South Korea to resume the six-party talks.

Kim had intended to visit New York on December to discuss U.S. financial sanctions against the Macao-based Banco Delta Asia bank, a source of foreign funds for North Korea. However, Kim called off the plan when the U.S. Treasury announced that the meeting would not be a negotiation but a briefing that explained U.S. views and policies.

Soon-Taek Kwon maypole@donga.com