An image of Yongbyon nuclear center of
DPRK is shown in this file photo dated Sept. 11, 2005. (Xinhua
BEIJING, June 26 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic
People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) submitted its nuclear declaration to the chair of
the six-party talks here Thursday afternoon, a step considered as "positive progress"
in the process of the Korean Peninsula denuclearization.
According to the Chinese Foreign Ministry, the DPRK ambassador to China Choe Jin Su submitted the declaration to Wu Dawei, China's top negotiator on the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue.
Prior to the submission, Wu held a press conference, reading a statement by the chair of the six-party talks, in which he said the United States would implement its obligations to remove the designation of the DPRK as a state sponsor of terrorism and to terminate the application of the Trading with the Enemy Acts.
"The talks have made positive progress in the second-phase actions for the implementation of the joint statement thanks to the concerted efforts by all the parties," Wu said.
He confirmed the parties, also including the Republic of Korea (ROK), Japan and Russia, agreed the declaration would be subject to verification and there was agreement within the parties on a set of principles to guide the establishment of a verification regime.
"We believe that the above-mentioned developments will be conducive to implementing the second-phase actions in a comprehensive and balanced manner, and the final realization of all the goals in the September 19, 2005 joint statement," said Wu, who is also China's vice foreign minister.
The United States welcomed the DPRK's declaration of its nuclear programs Thursday, calling it "an important step in the multistep process laid out in the six-party talks."
The White House said in a statement shortly after the submission that it would lift trade sanctions against the DPRK and remove the DPRK from its list of state sponsors of terrorism within 45 days.
"During this period, the United States will carefully assess DPRK's actions particularly with regard to verification," it said.
U.S. President George. W. Bush called the DPRK declaration "a positive step forward." But he said in a statement in the White House Rose Garden on Thursday "there's more work to be done and we've got the process in place to get it done in a verifiable way."
On Friday afternoon, the DPRK is expected to blow up the cooling tower at its Yongbyon nuclear complex, with witnesses of U.S. officials and international television crews.
TV crews from the other five countries in the nuclear talks, invited by the DPRK to broadcast the toppling of the tower, arrived at Pyongyang Sunan international airport Thursday afternoon.
Sung Kim, director of the office of Korean affairs at the U.S. State Department, will travel to the DPRK, according to an official at ROK's Foreign Ministry on condition of anonymity.
Chinese experts made positive comments on DPRK's submission of nuclear declaration and the destruction of the tower.
"This is a pivotal step on the process of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, which makes a sound atmosphere for the further talks," said Professor Zhang Liangui from the Central Party School which trains Communist Party of China (CPC) cadres.
"The cooling tower has been out of function since the disablement of the Yongbyon last year. But its destruction holds great symbolic significance."
These moves not only express the DPRK's determination of the denuclearization, but also rebuild the international society's confidence on the final resolution of the nuclear issue, Zhang said.
The DPRK and the United States have been engaged in a flurry of contacts recently despite a six-month delay of the declaration.
The world-renown New York Philharmonic made a historic performance in Pyongyang in February, the highest-level cultural exchange between the United States and the DPRK since the 1950-53 Korean War.
"The current DPRK-U.S. ties are the best in decades, which undoubtedly exerts a positive influence on the denuclearization," Qi Baoliang, a researcher at the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations.
But experts also warned the normalization of DPRK-U.S. diplomatic ties "still had a long way to go" and the process of the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue will continue to "face many obstacles."
Under an agreement reached at the six-party talks in Beijing on October 3, the DPRK agreed to abandon all nuclear weapons and programs and declare all its nuclear programs and facilities by the end of 2007, in exchange for diplomatic and economic incentives.
The six-party talks, launched in 2003, have so far held six rounds of talks in Beijing.
WASHINGTON, June 26 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President George W.
Bush said Thursday that the United States welcomes the nuclear declaration of
the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and will respond by lifting key
trade sanctions on the country and rescinding the DPRK from the list of state
sponsors of terrorism. Full story
WASHINGTON, June 26 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President George W. Bush said Thursday
that the DPRK must disclose all its nuclear activities and the nuclear
declaration it submitted is just a beginning but not the end. Full story
WASHINGTON, June 26 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President George W.
Bush said Thursday that the United States will lift sanctions on the DPRK under
the "Trading with the enemy act" and said he intends to notify the Congress to
remove the DPRK from the list of state sponsors of terrorism in 45 days. Full story
WASHINGTON, June 26 (Xinhua) -- The United States welcomed
the nuclear declaration of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and
promised steps to take the DPRK off the list of state sponsors of terrorism and
ease some trade sanctions. Full story
WASHINGTON, June 26 (Xinhua) -- The White House said
Thursday that it would remove the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)
from its list of state sponsors of terrorism and lift some trade sanctions
against the DPRK. Full story
PYONGYANG, June 26 (Xinhua) -- The cooling tower at
Yongbyon, the nuclear center of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea
(DPRK), may be blasted on Friday afternoon, said a DPRK official Thursday. Full story
PYONGYANG, June 25 (Xinhua) -- Major official newspapers
in Pyongyang on Wednesday delivered editorials to mark the 58th anniversary of
outbreak of the Korean War, urging the United States to drop its hostile policy
toward the DPRK. Full story