News

    US: Agenda for North Korea Talks 'Quite Narrow'

    Talk to be limited to determining whether Pyongyang is willing to return to Chinese-sponsored talks on its nuclear program

    David Dyar

    A senior State Department official said Monday that the U.S. agenda for talks with North Korea will be limited to determining whether Pyongyang is willing to return to Chinese-sponsored talks on its nuclear program and to reaffirm its 2005 agreement in principle to disarm.  U.S. envoy to North Korea Stephen Bosworth will arrive in Pyongyang on Tuesday for the highest-level bilateral meeting since President Barack Obama took office in January.

    There have been press reports that North Korea wants to use the Bosworth visit to pursue its long-standing quest for a peace treaty with Washington that would end the technical state of war that has existed since the Korean conflict of the 1950s.

    But a senior State Department official who spoke to reporters on the eve of the U.S. envoy's arrival in Pyongyang says Bosworth has a "quite narrow" agenda in North Korea, to determine whether the communist state will return to disarmament talks and to reaffirm the 2005 framework agreement under which Pyongyang is to scrap its nuclear program -- including weapons, in return for aid and other benefits from world powers.

    Bosworth, a retired senior U.S. diplomat is leading an interagency team of U.S. officials to Pyongyang for the highest level bilateral dialogue since the Chinese-sponsored six-party nuclear talks stalled last year.

    North Korea said it was quitting the talks after international criticism of a long-range missile test in April that Pyongyang said was a satellite launch.  It conducted its second nuclear test the following month amid belligerent rhetoric, but lately has struck a more conciliatory tone.

    The senior official said Bosworth will seek clarity on North Korea's intentions and said that if it wants to return to the negotiations, he is sure China would be ready to reconvene them.

    He said that if Pyongyang rejects the resumption of six-party discussions, the other participants would focus on enforcing sanctions under U.N. Security Council resolution 1874, which was approved after North Korea's May 25th nuclear test and consider possible additional penalties.

    Earlier, at a news briefing, State Department Spokesman Ian Kelly said that if North Korea wants to discuss a peace treaty with Washington or any other issue, it can do so in working groups in the context of renewed six-party talks. "It's a very simple agenda that Stephen Bosworth is going to Pyongyang with.  And that's that we are having these talks to insure a resumption of the six-party talks and to reaffirm the September 2005 joint statement and its goal of a complete and verifiable denuclearization of the Korean peninsula," he said.

    Bosworth, who goes to Pyongyang from Seoul on Tuesday, met South Korean Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan in Seoul on Monday.

    After the meetings in North Korea, Bosworth is due to have a quick round of consultations with the other members of the six-party talks in Seoul, Beijing, Tokyo and Moscow before returning to Washington on December 15th.

    Spokesman Kelly said Bosworth does not anticipate a meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, but has been assured that his team will see appropriate high-level officials in Pyongyang.

    The Bosworth team includes the U.S. delegate to the six-party talks, Sung Kim, but not the newly-named U.S. envoy on North Korean human rights, Robert King.

    King is taking part in meetings on North Korea this week at the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva.  On Monday, he urged Pyongyang to allow outside scrutiny of human rights conditions in the reclusive communist state.

    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.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora