Tags: russia | north | korea | talks

Russia, North Korea to Hold Nuclear Talks

Tuesday, 14 Oct 2008 06:00 PM

MOSCOW -- Russia's foreign minister will meet his North Korean counterpart on Wednesday in Moscow to discuss a six-party disarmament pact on Pyongyang's nuclear program, the ministry said.

"Special attention will be paid to the situation in northeastern Asia, in particular to the six-party talks over the nuclear problem of the Korean peninsula," Russian foreign ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said Tuesday.

Russia, along with the United States, Japan, China, South Korea and North Korea make up the six countries involved in the negotiations.

North Korean Foreign Minster Pak Ui-Chun's visit to Russia "will last several days," a defence ministry source told the Russian news agency Interfax.

"A positive dynamic has emerged in the solution of the nuclear problem of the Korean peninsula," the Russian foreign affairs ministry said in a separate statement.

The U.S. State Department said Saturday that Washington has removed North Korea from its terrorism blacklist in exchange for full inspections of all its nuclear facilities.

Pyongyang responded Sunday by announcing it would dismantle its nuclear facilities as agreed upon in the six-nation talks.

The International Atomic Energy Agency said Monday that North Korea has granted the U.N. atomic watchdog access to its nuclear facilities at Yongbyon after having barred inspectors last week.

Moscow asked all parties to continue to work towards a solution based on a joint declaration made between the six parties on September 19, 2005.

Russia "expresses its readiness to cooperate with its partners in achieving a verifiable denuclearization of the North Korean peninsula," the Russian foreign affairs ministry said in a statement.

The joint declaration, adopted in Beijing, called on the North Koreans to halt its nuclear military program and rejoin the Non-Proliferation Treaty, in return for one day being able to develop a civilian nuclear energy program.

Copyright 2008 AFP

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