News / Asia

US, North Korea Begin Exploratory Nuclear Talks

The Ronald H. Brown United States Mission to the United Nations in New York (File)
The Ronald H. Brown United States Mission to the United Nations in New York (File)
Margaret Besheer

The United States on Thursday characterized its first day of exploratory talks with North Korea as “serious and business-like.”  The two days of meetings are aimed at determining whether Pyongyang is willing to resume negotiations over its nuclear program. The talks are the highest-level meeting between the two countries since a visit to North Korea by a senior U.S. envoy nearly two years ago.

The closed-door meeting was held in the shadow of the United Nations - at the U.S. Mission.

U.S. Special Envoy for North Korea Stephen Bosworth greeted the head of the North Korean delegation, Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kae-gwan, with a handshake when he arrived in the morning.  Then they disappeared into the concrete tower until Mr. Kim emerged at midday for a lunch break.

The North Korean official traveled by car the short distance around the corner to his hotel, perhaps to avoid the throng of mostly Asian reporters and cameramen waiting for him outside the U.S. Mission.  But he was unsuccessful.  At his hotel, more reporters awaited him.

Kim stopped briefly to respond to their questions about the talks, saying, "the atmosphere was good" and that the meeting was "constructive and interesting." with an exchange of views on general issues.

At the State Department in Washington, Deputy Spokesman Mark Toner said the United States will use the talks, which it characterizes as “exploratory,” to determine whether North Korea is serious about fulfilling its nuclear obligations, including ending its nuclear program.

“There was the meeting in Bali between North and South Korea," said Toner. "It was constructive.  Now we have embarked on these exploratory discussions.  We are quite clear broadly what we are looking for, which is for North Korea to live up to its commitments in the 2005 joint statement as well as its international obligations.  And it needs to take concrete steps toward denuclearization.”

In exchange for North Korea meeting its obligations, the United States, China, South Korea, Japan and Russia - all members of the Six-Party Talks - would offer Pyongyang food and energy assistance as well as diplomatic incentives.

North Korea pulled out of the Six-Party Talks in April 2009 after the U.N. Security Council condemned Pyongyang's launch of a long-range rocket, in violation of a council resolution.

Relations on the Korean Peninsula deteriorated further last year, after North Korea was accused of sinking a South Korean warship and shelling a South Korean island.

Thursday’s meeting between the United States and North Korea continued into the afternoon.  Afterward, the United States said in a statement that the discussions were “serious and business-like” and that it looks forward to continuing the talks on Friday.  

You May Like

Video British Fighters on Frontline of Islamic State Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Pakistan's Political Turmoil Again Shines Spotlight on Military

Thousands of protesters calling for PM Sharif to step down continue protests in front of parliament, as critics fear political impasse could spur another military coup More

Photogallery Ebola Quarantines Spark Anxiety in Liberian Capital

Food prices rise sharply as residents attempting purchases clash with security forces, leaving one person dead 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.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid