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U.S., N.K. to Focus on Wrapping up Nuclear Declaration

Posted May. 28, 2008 19:12,   


The chief U.S. negotiator to the six-party nuclear talks and his North Korean counterpart spoke yesterday on Pyongyang’s declaration of its nuclear program and resumption of the multi-lateral dialogue in Beijing.

Assistant U.S. Secretary of State Christopher Hill and North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Kwan also discussed the North`s past abductions of Japanese nationals, a major obstacle to progress in the six-way talks, sources said.

Pyongyang is expected to complete its declaration of its nuclear activities, enabling Washington to move onto the dismantlement phase of the North’s nuclear program after verifying the disclosure.

After a meeting between Kim and Hill ends today, the parties to the six-way dialogue are expected to hold bilateral talks with one another.

Hill and Chinese counterpart Wu Dawei are expected to hold discussions. Japan’s chief nuclear envoy Akitaka Saiki will also discuss the North’s nuclear declaration and resumption of the six-party talks.

Hill will fly to Moscow Thursday.

South Korea’s top envoy to the six-party talks Kim Sook will also hold talks in Moscow today and Thursday with Russian counterpart Alexei Borodavkin, in a last ditch effort to iron out differences.

Earlier, North Korean diplomat Kim arrived at Beijing Capital International Airport yesterday around 11 a.m. Upon arrival, he simply thanked reporters and went straight to the North Korean Embassy.

Hill, who arrived in Beijing yesterday afternoon, had nothing substantial to say. Prior to his departure for Beijing, he told reporters he will focus on the North’s delayed declaration of its nuclear activities.

On if Kim Kye Kwan will bring a declaration draft, Hill said he had not heard of it.