News / USA

US, Japan Call for Peaceful Transition in North Korea

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (R) speaks during a meeting with Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba (L) at the State Department in Washington, December 19, 2011
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (R) speaks during a meeting with Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba (L) at the State Department in Washington, December 19, 2011

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her Japanese counterpart, Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba, on Monday urged a peaceful transition in North Korea following the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il. The development has delayed a U.S. decision on whether to provide new food aid to North Korea.

The meeting, held on Foreign Minister Gemba’s first Washington trip since taking office three months ago, was planned long before the announcement from Pyongyang.

But the death of Kim Jong Il dominated the discussion, with Clinton emerging to express hope that the transition underway in North Korea does not lead to regional turmoil.

Slideshow: World Reacts to Kim Jong Il's Death

“The foreign minister and I discussed the evolving situation on the Korean peninsula in light of reports from North Korea’s state-owned media on the death of Kim Jong Il," said Clinton. "We both share a common interest in a peaceful and stable transition in North Korea, as well as in insuring regional peace and stability.”

Clinton did not express condolences to the Pyongyang government but said the United States hopes for better relations with the North Korean people and said the United States remains deeply concerned about their well-being.

VOA's Ira Mellman Spoke With Joseph Cirincione, President Of The Plowshares Fund, A Security Foundation Focused On Nuclear Weapons Policy.

Heard through an interpreter, Foreign Minister Gemba stressed the need for close coordination with South Korea and other parties to the Chinese-sponsored six-party talks on North Korea’s nuclear program.

“We share the view that we should coordinate closely with six-party partners, and are also in agreement that all sides want stability and calmness during this period," said Gemba. "In addition, we also confirmed that we should maintain our close coordination among Japan, the United States and the Republic of Korea [South Korea] on the effort toward denuclearization of North Korea, in particular to ensure concrete actions [are] taken by North Korea.”

The six-party talks, in which North Korea agreed in principle in 2005 to disarm in return for economic and diplomatic benefits, have been stalled since 2008.

But the pace of contacts with Pyongyang has increased in recent months, including talks in Beijing last week between U.S. and North Korean officials on resuming American food aid to Pyongyang.

Recent news reports indicated that the United States was ready to resume food shipments for the first time in several years. But State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland says potentially decisive U.S. consultations on the issue - planned for Monday - were postponed because of the death of the North Korean leader.

“We haven’t yet had those internal discussions. And again, we want to be respectful of the North Korean period of mourning," said Nuland. "We will obviously need to reengage at the right moment. But again, we haven’t made any internal decisions here.”

Nuland indicated that Mr. Kim's death has prompted the Obama administration to put off a decision on whether to dispatch special envoy for North Korea Glyn Davies on another round of bilateral talks with North Korean diplomats.

Davies was in Beijing last week for meetings with Chinese officials on prospects for restarting the nuclear negotiations.

“The foreign minister and I discussed the evolving situation on the Korean peninsula in light of reports from North Korea’s state-owned media on the death of Kim Jong Il," said Clinton. "We both share a common interest in a peaceful and stable transition in North Korea, as well as in insuring regional peace and stability.”

Clinton did not express condolences to the Pyongyang government but said the United States hopes for better relations with the North Korean people and said the United States remains deeply concerned about their well-being.

Heard through an interpreter, Foreign Minister Gemba stressed the need for close coordination with South Korea and other parties to the Chinese-sponsored six-party talks on North Korea’s nuclear program.

“We share the view that we should coordinate closely with six-party partners, and are also in agreement that all sides want stability and calmness during this period," said Gemba. "In addition, we also confirmed that we should maintain our close coordination among Japan, the United States and the Republic of Korea [i.e., South Korea] on the effort toward denuclearization of North Korea, in particular to ensure concrete actions [are] taken by North Korea.”

The six-party talks, in which North Korea agreed in principle in 2005 to disarm in return for economic and diplomatic benefits, have been stalled since 2008.

But the pace of contacts with Pyongyang has increased in recent months, including talks in Beijing last week between U.S. and North Korean officials on resuming American food aid to Pyongyang.

Recent news reports indicated that the United States was ready to resume food shipments for the first time in several years. But State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland says potentially decisive U.S. consultations on the issue - planned for Monday - were postponed because of the death of the North Korean leader.

“We haven’t yet had those internal discussions. And again, we want to be respectful of the North Korean period of mourning," said Nuland. "We will obviously need to reengage at the right moment. But again, we haven’t made any internal decisions here.”

Nuland indicated that Mr. Kim's death has prompted the Obama administration to put off a decision on whether to dispatch special envoy for North Korea Glyn Davies on another round of bilateral talks with North Korean diplomats.

Davies was in Beijing last week for meetings with Chinese officials on prospects for restarting the nuclear negotiations.

You May Like

Ebola Death Toll Nears 5,000 as Virus Advances

West Africa bears heaviest burden; Mali toddler’s death raises new fears More

Jordan’s Battle With Islamic State Militants Carries Domestic Risks

Despite Western concerns that IS militants are preparing a Jordanian offensive, analysts call the kingdom's solid counter-terror intel a strong deterrent More

Asian-Americans Assume Office in Record Numbers

Steadily deepening engagement in local politics pays off for politicians like Chinese-American Judy Chu 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.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Comanche Chief Quanah Parker’s Century-Old House Falling Apart

One of the most fascinating people in U.S. history was Quanah Parker, the last chief of the American Indian tribe, the Comanche. He was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Parker was a fierce warrior until 1875 when he led his people to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and took on a new, peaceful life. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Cache, Oklahoma, Quanah’s image remains strong among his people, but part of his heritage is in danger of disappearing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid