`US, N Korea may hold nuclear talks this month`
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Last Updated: Sunday, October 02, 2011, 16:14
Seoul: The United States and North Korea are likely to hold a second round of talks this month to try to revive international nuclear disarmament negotiations, a South Korean report said on Sunday.

The meeting may come after a summit between US President Barack Obama and his South Korean counterpart Lee Myung-Bak in Washington on October 13, an unnamed senior government official in Seoul told Yonhap news agency.

Last month the chief nuclear envoys for North and South Korea met in Beijing for discussions on how to revive long-stalled six-nation negotiations on the North's nuclear programme.

The inter-Korean discussions came after a meeting between the two sides in Bali in July which was followed by US-North Korean talks in New York.

The North abandoned the six-nation forum in April 2009, a month before staging a second nuclear test which brought worldwide condemnation and fresh United Nations sanctions.

Now all sides say they want to start talking again, especially after Pyongyang's disclosure in November last year of a uranium enrichment programme which could give it a second way to make atomic weapons.

Pyongyang has repeatedly called for talks with no strings attached. But South Korea and the United States say it must show it is serious about giving up its nuclear arsenal in return for economic, diplomatic and security benefits.

They want the North, before the talks resume, to halt its uranium enrichment programme, readmit UN nuclear inspectors and declare a moratorium on missile and nuclear tests, according to media reports.


First Published: Sunday, October 02, 2011, 16:14

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