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Conclusion of U.S.-North Korea Talks in Beijing


Talks involving North Korea and the United States end in Beijing, with one U.S. official saying Pyongyang acknowledged it does have nuclear weapons. U.S. intelligence officials have argued for years that Pyongyang has one or two crude nuclear bombs, but the north Koreans have repeatedly denied this. More on the talks now from VOA-TV's David Cohler

NATURAL SOUND COLIN POWELL SPEAKING
“THANK YOU VERY MUCH LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.”

U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell told the Asia-Pacific Council Thursday that talks in Beijing among North Korea, China, and the United States had served their purpose.

COLIN POWELL, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE
"The North Koreans presented their point of view, strongly. The Chinese did as well as did the United States. The meetings are coming to a close now. The sides will return to their capitals and assess what they heard, analyze proposals that were put down by the parties, and determine where we will go next."

Secretary Powell was asked about a charge carried Thursday by official North Korean news media that the United States is leading the region toward war.

COLIN POWELL, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE
"They should not leave this series of discussions that have been held in Beijing with the slightest impression that the United States and its partners and its nations in the region will be intimidated by bellicose statements or by threats or actions they think might get them more attention or might force us to make a concession that we would not otherwise make. They would be very ill-advised to move in that direction."

The talks were held at a secluded villa, with the news media kept at a distance. Even the normally affable U.S. delegation chief, Assistant Secretary of State James Kelly, had no comment, confining himself to a smile and a wave.

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