News / Asia

US N. Korea Envoy in Asia Amid Push to Revive Nuclear Talks

FILE - U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Policy Glyn Davies (C), Sept. 12, 2013.
FILE - U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Policy Glyn Davies (C), Sept. 12, 2013.
William Ide
The United States special envoy to North Korea travels to Asia this week as regional powers step up efforts to restart talks on ending Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons programs. Glyn Davies, the U.S. Special Representative for North Korea arrives in China Tuesday and will later make stops in Seoul and Tokyo. But it is the envoy’s stop in China that is going to be watched closely for any signs of a breakthrough.

When Glyn Davies arrives in Beijing Tuesday it will be the second time he has met with China’s top negotiator, Wu Dawei, in the short space of less than a month.

Wu has been traveling between Pyongyang and Washington in recent weeks.  Japan, South Korea and the United States have also held trilateral talks in Washington.

The U.S. State Department was hesitant to make any predictions about the talks when Davies’ travel plans were released last week, but did add that “every discussion is an opportunity.”

North Korea analysts in China agree.

“It’s very difficult to tell what exactly will come out of Glyn Davies' visit this time. But the fact that Davies is coming shows that both China and the United States are working very closely to bring North Korea back to the diplomatic track,” said Wang Dong, a political scientist at Peking University.

North Korea pulled out of the six party-talks in 2009 and has called for their resumption with no preconditions. Washington says North Korea needs to show it is serious about abandoning its pursuit of nuclear weapons before the United States will resume negotiations.

For its part, China has been stepping up its efforts in recent months to let the North know how serious it is about sanctions and getting back to the negotiating table. 

In September, China released a list of banned export items to North Korea to make sure that United Nations sanctions were being tightly enforced following a North Korean nuclear test earlier this year.

The list was released amid reported concerns that North Korea might be accelerating its nuclear weapons programs.  At the same time, however, North Korea has been accelerating its efforts to boost economic engagement as well, particularly with China.

China is North Korea’s biggest trading partner and Beijing is keen to get Pyongyang to adopt more economic openness. Analysts say the hope is that such advances would gradually shake the North of its nuclear ambitions.

Lu Chao, a specialist on the Korean peninsula at Liaoning Academy of Social Sciences, says China’s influence, however, is limited.

Lu says that ultimately North Korea will decide whether it opens up or not. He says China wants to see more businessmen going there to invest, but from the North’s perspective it seems that Pyongyang will not open up too quickly or broadly to reform. Adding that it is still a military first regime.

Wang Dong says what the international community needs is a peaceful development strategy for North Korea to help it move beyond its insecurities and ideological constraints that keep it from developing its economy.

“North Korea has to understand the logic that they cannot eat the cake and have it too. I think this is very important. They say they want economic construction and they say they also want nuclear capability, but they have to understand there are trade-offs between the two,” said Wang Dong.

Earlier this fall, the North proposed a freeze of its nuclear and long-range ballistic missile tests in exchange for the restart of talks. The offer, while viewed by the U.S. government as a positive step, has failed to gain any traction. Pyongyang has made similar promises in the past, only to go back on them.

The U.S. State Department says that after his stop in Beijing, Davies will visit Seoul on Friday and Saturday and spend two more days in Tokyo before concluding his trip.

You May Like

Multimedia Obama, Modi Resolve Nuclear Deal Issues

Leaders find resolution on issues of liability of suppliers to India in event of nuclear accident, US demands to track whereabouts of material supplied to country More

WHO's Late Efforts in Tackling Ebola Highlight Need for Reform

Health experts debate measures to reform agency’s response to global public health emergencies in special one-day session on deadly outbreak More

One Tumultuous Year in Power for CAR's President

As sectarian violence raged across Central African Republic, interim President Catherine Samba-Panza has Herculean task: to end civil war and put country back on right track More

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.
Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youthi
X
Julie Taboh
January 23, 2015 11:08 PM
Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.
Video

Video US Marching Bands Grow Into a Show of Their Own

The 2014 Super Bowl halftime show was the most-watched in history - attracting an estimated 115 million viewers. That event featured pop star Bruno Mars. But the halftime show tradition started with marching bands, which still dominate the entertainment at U.S. high school and college American football games. But as Enming Liu reports in this story narrated by Adrianna Zhang, marching bands have grown into a show of their own.
Video

Video Secular, Religious Kurds Face Off in Southeast Turkey

Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast has been rocked by violence between religious and secular Kurds. Dorian Jones reports on the reasons behind the stand-off from the region's main city of Diyarbakir, which suffered the bloodiest fighting.
Video

Video Kenya: Misuse of Antibiotics Leading to Resistance by Immune System

In Kenya, the rise of drug resistant bacteria could reverse the gains made by medical science over diseases that were once treatable. Kenyans could be at risk of fatalities as a result if the power in antibiotics is not preserved. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story from Nairobi.
Video

Video Solar-Powered Plane Getting Ready to Circumnavigate Globe

Pilots of the solar plane that already set records flying without a drop of fuel are close to making their first attempt to fly the craft around the globe. They plan to do it in 25 flying days over a five month period. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video How Experts Decide Ethiopia Has the Best Coffee

Ethiopia’s coffee has been ranked as the best in the world by an international group of coffee connoisseurs. Not surprisingly, coffee is a top export for the country. But at home it is a source of pride. Marthe van der Wolf in Addis Ababa decided to find out what makes the bean and brew so special and how experts make their determinations.
Video

Video Yazidi Refugees at Center of Political Fight Between Turkey, Kurds

The treatment of thousands of Yazidis refugees who fled to Turkey to escape attacks by Islamic State militants has become the center of a dispute between the Turkish government and the country's pro-Kurdish movement. VOA's Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video World’s Richest 1% Forecast to Own More Than Half of Global Wealth

The combined wealth of the world's richest 1 percent will overtake that of the remaining 99 percent at some point in 2016, according to the anti-poverty charity Oxfam. Campaigners are demanding that policymakers take action to address the widening gap between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’, as Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid