North Korea says it will not dismantle its nuclear weapons until the United States changes its policy toward Pyongyang.
The North's official Korean Central News Agency said Monday that Pyongyang will conclude U.S. policy has changed only if Washington signs a non-aggression pact and establishes diplomatic ties with the Communist state. The North Koreans say the United States also must make clear that it will not hinder Pyongyang's foreign trade.
If Washington does not clearly indicate that its policy is changing, the North Korean news agency says, Pyongyang will declare at six-party talks beginning in Beijing later this month that it will keep its nuclear weapons.
Diplomats from the United States, North Korea, South Korea, Japan, Russia and China are to meet in Beijing for three days beginning on August 27.
China sent a high-level military delegation to North Korea Monday on what is termed a good-will visit.
The official Xinhua news agency says the delegation is led by General Xu Caihou, a Communist Party Central Committee member who heads the political department of the People's Liberation Army. General Xu's is said to be making a reciprocal visit to North Korea, following a tour of China four months ago by the director-general of the political bureau of the North Korean army, Cho Myongrok.
The trip comes nine days before the start of crucial six-way talks in Beijing to resolve the crisis over North Korea's nuclear ambitions. The talks will be attended by the two Koreas, China, the United States, Russia and Japan.