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US to Denuke N. Korea via `Irreversible` Means

Posted August. 17, 2009 07:17,   


A senior U.S. diplomat yesterday said the U.S. seeks to denuclearize North Korea through “irreversible” measures.

Philip Goldberg, U.S. President Barack Obama`s special envoy for implementing sanctions on Pyongyang, told a briefing at the U.S. State Department that he will travel to Asia next week to push for implementation of U.N. sanctions against the North’s nuclear activities. He is scheduled to visit Singapore early next week before hitting Tokyo via Bangkok and Seoul.

His comments clarify the Obama administration’s determination to continue pressuring the North after imposing its own sanctions separate from the U.N. Security Council’s resolution.

A diplomatic source said, “The United States is still looking for North Korean entities to sanction and has expressed its strong determination to thoroughly detect any North Korean nuclear and missile activities through clandestine transactions.”

Goldberg also announced that he will visit China, which holds the key to the success of sanctions on the North.

He said Washington and Beijing have agreed on his second visit to China and are in the process of determining the specific schedule for the visit, which could come as early as late this month.

Goldberg`s team is working on tight sanctions on the North through consultations with European countries after visiting China, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Russia immediately after the North`s second nuclear test.

He said he will share information on the progress in the implementation of sanctions on the North and Pyongyang`s illegal activities through his upcoming travel to Seoul, Tokyo and Singapore.

Goldberg also called Thailand and Singapore core members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations as well as the center of regional trade, finance and maritime transportation. He indicated that he will discuss financial sanctions on the North and ways to search North Korean cargo in international waters.

On the results of his visits to Asian nations and Russia for consultations on the sanctions, he said all of the countries showed interest in the U.S. recommendation of caution on conducting transactions with the North, causing Asian banks to examine more closely their financial dealings with Pyongyang.