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Bush hails six-party talks in solving Korean Peninsula nuclear issue
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08:37, August 01, 2008

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U.S. President George W. Bush said Wednesday that the six-party talks as a multilateral mechanism remains "the best way" to peacefully solve the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula.

"Multilateral diplomacy is the best way" to peacefully solve the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue, he told reporters from China, South Korea and Thailand at the White House ahead of his upcoming trip to the three countries.

"I will do nothing to undermine the six-party structure, the credibility of the six-party structure, and our partners," he said.

The president said the six-party talks could also serve as a mechanism to solve other "delicate" issues once the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue is solved.

"Our vision is, once that issue gets solved ... then the six-party talks can serve as another mechanism," he said.

"It's part of a foreign policy vision that's multilateral in nature, with strong bilateral relations that help create an atmosphere in which old grievances and new issues can be solved ina peaceful way," he said.

Noting the U.S. plan to remove the Democratic People's Republic of Korea from the list of "state sponsors of terrorism," Bush said verification remains essential in the deal.

"This is a phased-in deal -- that there must be verification that we're all happy with, a verification mechanism on not only plutonium, but also highly enriched uranium, as well as proliferation," he said.

The latest round of six-party talks concluded on July 12 in Beijing with an agreement among chief delegates of the six-party talks to establish a verification mechanism for denuclearization.

The foreign ministers of the six-party talks met in an informal meeting in Singapore last week on the sidelines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Ministerial Meeting. The informal meeting achieved "very meaningful results," according to Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi.

"With joint efforts, the six parties agreed that the initial success has been achieved" and the informal talks "made useful preparation for the formal Six-Party Ministerial Talks," Yang said.


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