News

Rice Urges North Korea to Re-Enter Nuclear Disarmament Talks

U.S Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, in Tokyo as part of a six-nation Asian tour, has urged North Korea to return to the stalled six-nation talks on Pyongyang's nuclear weapons program. In later remarks, Ms. Rice also gave a hint that there are limits to Washington's patience.

In what U.S. officials billed as a major policy speech, and later in remarks to reporters, the secretary of state said Saturday it is time for North Korea to stop brandishing its nuclear capability, and resolve the issue in the multilateral arena.

She called on all nations to use whatever leverage they can to bring Pyongyang back to the negotiating table, where talks are aimed at convincing the North Koreans to dismantle their nuclear programs.

In a speech at Sophia University early in the day, Ms. Rice reiterated that the United States has no intention of attacking North Korea. But her later remarks contained a hint of a threat, in the event that diplomacy fails.

"We are committed to diplomacy, but I think it goes without saying that no one is going to be prepared to allow the North Koreans just to continue down a road that threatens everyone," she said.

Pyongyang, which says it is building nuclear weapons as a deterrent, has said it would not consider new talks, until Ms. Rice apologizes for earlier calling North Korea "an outpost of tyranny." Earlier this week, the North's official news agency called Ms. Rice "bereft of any political logic."

The U.S. secretary of state has already visited India, Pakistan and Afghanistan on this trip. After Japan, she is due to spend time in South Korea and China.

She says she will appeal to Chinese officials to use their influence with Pyongyang to help restart the stalled negotiations, but she is playing down expectations that there will be a breakthrough on this trip.

During a wide ranging meeting with her Japanese counterpart, Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura, on Saturday, the U.S. secretary of state called on Japan to quickly resume U.S. beef imports. She said the matter is "very, very important" to the U.S. government.

The beef trade has been halted for 15 months, since one dairy cow in Washington State, exported from Canada, was found to have "mad cow" disease.

Mr. Machimura, standing beside Ms. Rice, told reporters that Japan's Food Safety Commission, not politicians, has to decide on the timing.

The Japanese foreign minister says it is not possible at this point to state a timeline or a deadline for the resumption of the beef trade.


Steve Herman

A veteran journalist, Steve Herman is VOA's Southeast Asia Bureau Chief and Correspondent, based in Bangkok.

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs