Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
. Military Space News .

Subscribe to our free daily newsletters

Marathon North Korean Nuclear Talks Struggle Through Seventh Day

On hands on deck

Beijing, China (AFP) Aug 02, 2005
Six-nation talks on ending North Korea's nuclear weapons drive struggled through a seventh day with limited progress Monday as differences persisted on key disarmament issues.

"It's been a long day without a lot of progress to report," chief US delegate Christopher Hill told reporters at his hotel late Monday.

"I don't see any breakthroughs on the immediate horizon," he added.

The United States and North Korea held two more one-on-one meetings and all sides spent three-and-a-half hours studying a revised document submitted by China aimed at establishing a framework on ridding the Korean pensinsula of nuclear weapons.

The United States and North Korea, still observing a truce after the Korean war in the early 1950s, have met eight times on the sidelines of the talks in the past week.

"We continue to have rather major differences between North Korea on one hand and the other five parties on the other," Hill said without going into specifics.

He said the issue of energy aid to a nuclear arms-free North Korea is "one of the several principles" to be included in the document.

The first draft sparked fiery exchanges Sunday between the sides, who are looking to find a solution to the standoff that began when the United States accused North Korea of running a secret uranium enrichment program in 2002.

Officials say the arguments boil down to whether North Korea should dismantle its weapons before it gets aid and security guarantees, as the US demands, or whether it gets the incentives first, as North Korea wants.

"I am sure there are a lot of elements in the second draft as well as in the first draft that they were not entirely happy with," Hill said.

The fourth round of talks involving the two Koreas, China, Japan, Russia and the United States are the longest since the process was initiated in 2003 and have been characterised by softer rhetoric from all sides.

But the going has still been tough.

"Although we worked very actively we can hardly say there was big progress as major areas of contention still remain," top Japanese envoy Kenichiro Sasae told reporters at the end of the day.

"We will again take on drafting work tomorrow, mostly at the level of deputy chiefs but delegation chiefs may be involved in some cases."

The fact the talks have continued for seven days is seen by some analysts as a sign of progress.

"We'll stay here as long as we feel we'll make progress," said Hill, the assistant US secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs. "And if we are not making progress we are not going to stay here."

China, North Korea's closest ally, has been driving the negotiations, engaging in its most significant diplomatic offensive in years as it seeks a peaceful end to a crisis that could have serious implications for Beijing.

After disagreements emerged Sunday on the contents of the draft document, China reworked it and submitted the text again Monday.

Jiji Press, citing a Japanese delegation source, said Japan could not accept the first draft because it did not refer to the Cold War kidnapping of Japanese nationals by North Korea.

Another Japanese media report quoted sources as saying that although the draft called for the abandonment of Pyongyang's nuclear program, it did not include the word nuclear "dismantlement" as sought by the United States and Japan.

The draft did however reflect a key concern of the North, that it be given security guarantees in exchange for ending its nuclear weapons programs, Kyodo news agency said.

With the talks stretching to an unprecedented seventh day, and defined by the direct contacts between North Korea and the United States, hopes have been raised that a way forward can eventually be found.

South Korean Deputy Foreign Minister Song Min-Soon, his country's chief delegate, said it was still too early to say when the joint statement would be ready.

North Korea declared on February 10 that it possessed nuclear weapons and said it needed them as a deterrent to what it said were US plans to launch a nuclear attack.

Related Links
Search SpaceDaily
Subscribe To SpaceDaily Express

One Killed, One Hurt In Fire On Scrapped Russian Nuclear Submarine
Moscow, Russia (AFP) Aug 02, 2005
One person was killed and another hurt in a fire Monday on a decommissioned nuclear submarine that was being scrapped in northern Russia, but the vessel's reactor had already been removed and radiation levels were normal in the port, officials said.

  • US-Indian Military Accord Does Not Compromise Security: Defence Minister
  • US Deputy Secretary Of State Zoellick In China For Strategic Dialogue
  • US Plans To Put An Indian Astronomer In Orbit
  • US Feting India To Balance Power In China-Dominated Asia: Analysts

  • One Killed, One Hurt In Fire On Scrapped Russian Nuclear Submarine
  • Marathon North Korean Nuclear Talks Struggle Through Seventh Day
  • Defiant Iran Prepares To Resume Nuclear Work
  • Analysis: All's Quiet On Six-Party Front

  • NGC-Led Team Selects ATK's Utah Facility For Stage 1 Motor Work On KEIs
  • Surrounded By Hostile Missiles
  • US Prepares For New Round Of Civil Aviation Missile Defense Tests
  • India Tests Short-Range Surface-To-Air Missile

  • SBX Radar Takes Giant Stride Forward
  • BMD Focus: The Test Of Reality
  • Missile Politics On The Northern Flank
  • Japan To Bring Forward Missile Defense Shield To 2006: Report

  • Air France Plane Hit By Lightning Before Crash: Passengers
  • Rolls-Royce Shares Rocket On Strong Profits, Dividend News
  • Imaging Technique Reduces Structural Component Failures
  • Rockwell Collins Applies New NASA Software Verification Technology

  • European Defence Agency Briefs Industry On Long-Endurance UAV Needs
  • Boeing Awards Multiple Contracts for First Phase of New UAV Program
  • RQ-8B Fire Scout Vertical Takeoff and Landing Tactical UAV System
  • Japan Plans First Spy Plane To Watch North Korea: Report

  • US Probes Insurgency Funding
  • Finding The Exit In Iraq
  • US Knows Of About 10 Leaders Of Iraq's Insurgency: Pentagon
  • Analysis: Blair's Iraq link problem

  • US Marine Corps Orders Advanced Gunnery & Virtual Convoy Training Systems
  • Outside View: UXBs At Closing US Bases
  • Training, Hydration Help Baghdad Troops Cope With Heat
  • Raytheon Delivers First Increment Of Microlight Radios For Land Warrior

  • The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2006 - SpaceDaily.AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA PortalReports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additionalcopyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement