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Six-party talks only route for US dialogue with North Korea: Hill
Cat : Peace And Security
Date : 2006-10-27 12:37:38                      Reader : 303

NKorea, but the whole world. Only at that time world will be secured.

Peace & Security

Assoicated France Press 27-10-2006

Six-party talks only route for US dialogue with North Korea: Hill

Fri Oct 27, 12:46 AM ET

NADI (AFP) - Stalled six-party talks have to restart for the US to talk to North Korea, following the isolated regime's nuclear test earlier this month, US Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill said Thursday.

"The North Koreans haven't expressed an interest in having a dialogue with anyone really," Hill told reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of Pacific Island Forum countries in Fiji.

"We've made very clear that if they come back to the (six-party) process, we're certainly prepared to talk to them directly," he said.

Hill was asked about calls for the US to engage in direct dialogue with Kim Jong-Il's regime following the October 9 declared nuclear test.

But Hill said the six-party agreement was very important to the US, because it ensured a united stand by countries in the region over North Korea's nuclear ambitions.

North Korea's nuclear test caused a global uproar with the UN Security Council issuing a resolution imposing economic sanctions aimed at curbing Pyongyang's weapons program.

Threats by Pyongyang against South Korea over adopting sanctions imposed after the test flew in the face of Seoul's clear undertaking to follow the resolution "to the letter", said Hill, who has responsibility for East Asian and Pacific affairs.

North Korea needed to understand UN Security Council resolutions were binding on everyone, he said.

"North Korea needs to take some time to think about this, and get themselves back to the table and back to what the United Nations has demanded that it do," he said.

North Korea pulled out of the six-nation talks in November last year in protest at financial sanctions imposed by Washington against Pyongyang for alleged money-laundering and counterfeiting.

Aside from the US and North Korea, the other nations involved in the talks are China, South Korea, Japan and Russia.

Returning to the talks is one of the key planks of the UN Security Council resolution imposed against North Korea for conducting its nuclear test.

Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Aso said Wednesday his country should reopen the debate on whether to develop a nuclear weapon capability in light of the North Korean programme.

"We need to discuss once again why Japan came to decide not to possess nuclear arms," Aso told a parliamentary foreign affairs committee.

"On the assumption that North Korea really owns nuclear arms now, the situation in the Far East has changed drastically.

"We should discuss if Japan can stay as it is."

But Hill said Japan's non-nuclear policy remained intact.

Hill recently travelled with US Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice to Japan and South Korea, following the North Korean test.

"We understand from the Japanese that they have had no change in their policy against developing, importing or using nuclear weapons, so there is no change in Japan," he said.

"Proliferation of that kind is something we all need to be concerned about, it's one of the reasons why Secretary of State Rice wanted to get out there to assure our allies that the US is prepared to use all our deterrent capability if South Korea or Japan is threatened."

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