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(LEAD) U.S., China discuss prospects of nuclear talks with N. Korea

2013/09/11 17:10

(ATTN: UPDATES with meeting, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman's quotes in first 4 paras; CHANGES headline)

BEIJING, Sept. 11 (Yonhap) -- The U.S. special envoy on North Korea met with his Chinese counterpart on Wednesday to discuss ways of resuming long-stalled nuclear talks with the North.

Glyn Davies, the U.S. special representative on North Korea policy, arrived in Beijing late Tuesday on the second leg of his three-country trip to South Korea, China and Japan. In Beijing, Davies held talks with his Chinese counterparts, including China's chief nuclear envoy Wu Dawei.

The meeting between Davies and Wu comes amid indications that Beijing is stepping up its efforts to resume the six-party talks on ending the North's nuclear weapons program. Seoul and Washington, however, are firmly against sitting with Pyongyang at the negotiating table unless the North shows a clear sign on denuclearization.

"Talks are still ongoing," said Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei when asked about the details of the meeting. "We will release relevant information in due course."

   In Seoul, Davies told reporters that Washington will not resume the six-party talks on the North's nuclear program "until we see a much greater degree of willingness on the part of North Korea (to denuclearize)."

   Tensions on the Korean Peninsula have been gradually easing of late. Earlier this year, North Korea warned of an imminent war after conducting its third nuclear test.

China has recently suggested a mid-September gathering of senior government officials and academics from the six countries involved in the off-and-on talks on denuclearizing North Korea. The talks, which involve the two Koreas, the U.S., China, Japan and Russia, have been stalled since late 2008.

But, South Korea and the U.S. have shown little appetite in sending their nuclear envoys to the so-called "Track 1.5" meeting, set for Sept. 18 in Beijing.

Asked about China's efforts to resume the six-party process, Davies told reporters upon his arrival at Beijing Capital International Airport Tuesday night that "we will work together," without further elaborating.



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