ĦĦBEIJING, July 26 (Xinhuanet) -- The
six-party talks on the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue restarted Tuesday in
Beijing after a 13-month-long impasse, with the United States promising not to
attack the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).
US chief negotiator Christopher Hill said at the
opening session of the fourth round of the talks that the United States regards
the DPRK as a sovereign state and has no intention to send troops to or attack
The US statement was of particular concern to the
DPRK, who over the past years has repeatedly asked the United States to respect
its sovereignty and normalize political and economic relations with it, while
offering "definite assurance" of non-aggression against it.
The six nations, China, the DPRK, the United States,
the Republic of Korea (ROK), Russia and Japan, have agreed to realize the
denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, but are yet to decide on the approach
to the goal.
To find a solution to disputes, the six nations held
three rounds of talks in Beijing from 2003 to 2004, but failed to achieve
substantial results. The fourth round was originally planned in September last
Early this year, the new Bush administration called
the DPRK an "outpost of tyranny." In return, the DPRK announced on Feb. 10 it
was suspending its participation in the six-party talks on the nuclear issue for
an "indefinite period."
The DPRK also declared that it already had
self-defensive nuclear weapons.
In his opening address Tuesday morning, Hill said
nuclear weapons would not make the DPRK safer.
"Nuclear weapons will not make the DPRK more secure
and in fact on the contrary, nuclear weapons on the Korean Peninsula will only
increase tensions in the region and threaten the integrity of the global
non-proliferation regime." he said.
"The six-party talks offer a better future for the
DPRK." He said. If the DPRK decided to dismantle its nuclear program
"permanently, fully, verifiably," the other parties including his country were
prepared to take corresponding measures consistent with the principle of words
for words and actions for actions.
In the past year when the six-party talks were
suspended, the US side had bilateral contact with the DPRK for six times under
the framework of the six-party talks.
Hill said the US side had made clear its key stance
and opinions to the DPRK through those contacts and the United States was ready
for "serious" talks under the same framework.
Meanwhile, DPRK's delegation head Kim Kye-gwan said
political will and strategic resolution are needed to wipe out the threats of a
nuclear war on the Korean Peninsula and to realize a nuclear-weapon-free Korean
The DPRK is ready for that, he said, adding that the
DPRK side would work together with the other five parties to prevent the meeting
from going fruitless.
As the host country, Chinese Foreign Minister Li
Zhaoxing urged negotiators to take a "flexible and pragmatic" attitude to seek
"positive" progress in the new round of negotiation.
A nuclear-weapon-free Korean Peninsula and long-term
peace and stability in the region would serve the interests of all parties
concerned, Li said.
Noting there might be various difficulties during the
talks, he said, so long as all sides worked together there would be success.
"Nothing in the world is difficult for one who sets
his mind on it," he quoted a Chinese saying. "China will continue to work with
all sides for realizing denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and regional
peace and stability."
The ROK delegation urged all the negotiators to
concentrate on the nuclear issue.
"It is not ideal for the parties concerned to
distract from this target (of building a nuclear-weapons-free Korean Peninsula)
during the new round of the six-party talks," said Song Min-soon, the ROK's
delegation head and deputy foreign minister.
However, Japan's chief negotiator Sasae Kenichiro
still raised the abduction issue at the opening session, saying outstanding
issues of concern such as nuclear missiles and abduction should be resolved in a
Russian delegation head Alexander Alexeyev said the
"package solution" to the nuclear issue that Russia had proposed had not lost
its feasibility, and Russia was willing to revise it if necessary.
Russia proposed a package solution to the issue in
the previous rounds, including to create a nuclear-weapon-free Korean Peninsula
and provide security guarantee for every country in the region, including the
The only feasible way to resolve the issue is to hold
diplomatic talks in accordance with the spirit of mutual respect, mutual
understanding and equality, and take the concerns of all sides into
consideration, he said.
A series of one-to-one meetings were held among
delegations after the opening of the talks, for which no deadline has been set.
This, as some analysts say, demonstrated the determination of the parties in
seeking progress instead of going away from problems. Enditem