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U.S. DPRK envoys to hold talks in Beijing


08:53, February 14, 2012

WASHINGTON, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- Envoys from the United States and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) will hold talks for the resumption of the long-stalled six-party talks in the Chinese capital of Beijing next week, in their first such contact following the death of former DPRK leader Kim Jong Il, U.S. State Department announced here on Monday.

An interagency team of U.S. officials led by U.S. special representative for DPRK policy Glyn Davies will meet with a DPRK delegation led by its First Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan in Beijing next Thursday, the State Department said in a statement.

According to the brief statement, the meeting will "continue the discussions that took place in July 2011 in New York and October 2011 in Geneva."

"This is a continuation of the meetings that we've been having with North Korea to see if it is prepared to fulfill its commitment and its international obligations as well as to take concrete steps towards denuclearization," State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters in a regular briefing on Monday.

She said that the main focus of the upcoming meeting would be the six-party talks, although the issue of food aid could also be touched upon.

Former U.S. Special Representative for DPRK Policy Stephen Bosworth met with DPRK Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan in late July in New York and in late October in Geneva last year respectively over a possible resumption of the long-stalled six- party talks on Korean Peninsula denuclearization.

U.S. government official had previously noted that the talks, with an exploratory nature, were designed to see whether the DPRK was ready to take concrete steps sought by the United States and the Republic of Korea (ROK) for the resumption of the six-party talks, while the DPRK had said that it was ready to resume the talks without preconditions.

The six-party talks, which involves the DPRK, the ROK, the United States, China, Japan and Russia, were launched in 2003, but got bogged down in December 2008 after finishing the sixth round. The DPRK quit the talks in April 2009.


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