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New round of Korean Peninsular nuclear talks starts in Beijing
2008/12/08

Envoys from the six nations to the Korean Peninsular nuclear talks gather to hold talks in the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, on Dec. 8, 2008. A new round of the six-party talks is begun here Monday afternoon for a fresh round of talks on the denuclearization of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Envoys from the six nations to the Korean Peninsular nuclear talks gather to hold talks in the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, on Dec. 8, 2008. A new round of the six-party talks is begun here Monday afternoon for a fresh round of talks on the denuclearization of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK). (Xinhua/Wang Jianhua)

Envoys from the six nations involved in the Korean Peninsular nuclear talks gathered in Beijing Monday for a fresh round of negotiation on removing nuclear weapons from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

The talks, held in the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse after a five-month suspension, focus on producing a protocol to verify the DPRK's nuclear program, and economic aid to the country, according to diplomatic sources.

Wu Dawei, head of the Chinese delegation, proposed the talks focus on three major issues.

"First, verification; secondly, continuous implementation of the second phase action plan; and thirdly the establishment of a peace and security mechanism in northeast Asia," Wu said.

The six-parties agreed to a disarmament schedule in October 2007. The DPRK said it has slowed down that process because of sluggish economic compensation.

On Saturday, DPRK vowed to ignore Japan at the talks, citing Tokyo's refusal to send aid to the country as part of the agreement.

The U.S. and DPRK have also had recent disagreements.

Chief U.S. envoy Christopher Hill and his DPRK counterpart KimKye Gwan held talks in Singapore on Thursday and Friday. They failed to reach a deal on sampling of atomic material.

"We should participate in the meeting with a flexible and pragmatic attitude. We need joint efforts to narrow differences and lay a solid foundation for promoting talks into next phase", Wu said.

He also called on the six nations to continue to adhere to the principles of "word for word, action for action" and "phased implementation".

Under an agreement reached at the six-party talks in Beijing in February last year, the DPRK agreed to abandon all nuclear weapons and programs. It also said it would declare all its nuclear programs and facilities by the end of 2007. In exchange DPRK would get diplomatic and economic incentives.

A vice-minister level mechanism launched in 2003, the six-party talks also include China, the United States, the Republic of Korea, Japan and Russia.

Chinese top nuclear negotiator and Vice Foreign Minister Wu Dawei (1st R, front) addresses a fresh round of talks on the denuclearization of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) in the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, on Dec. 8, 2008.

Chinese top nuclear negotiator and Vice Foreign Minister Wu Dawei (1st R, front) addresses a fresh round of talks on the denuclearization of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) in the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, on Dec. 8, 2008. (Xinhua/Wang Jianhua)

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