U.S. ends 'constructive' talks with N.Korea

Reuters , Saturday 30 Jul 2011

The U.S. ended "constructive" talks with North Korea on Friday and will consult with Seoul and other allies on whether to reopen stalled negotiations on Pyongyang's nuclear program

U.S. special envoy for North Korea Stephen Bosworth

U.S. envoy Stephen Bosworth held two days of talks with veteran North Korean nuclear negotiator Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye-gwan at the U.S. mission to the United Nations in New York, their first such interaction since 2009.

It was not immediately clear what, if any, agreements were reached during the U.S.-North Korean discussions.

Bosworth told reporters outside the mission that the talks were "constructive," the same word that Kim used earlier to describe the meetings when he left the building.

Bosworth made clear it was too early to say what decisions Washington might take on resuming six-nation nuclear negotiations, which have been suspended for years.

"As we have said from the beginning of these discussions, they are designed to explore the willingness of North Korea to take concrete and irreversible steps toward denuclearization," he said. "In that regard, these were constructive and businesslike discussions."

"We reiterated that the path is open to North Korea towards the resumption of talks, improved relations with the United States, and greater regional stability," he said.

But that would only be possible "if North Korea demonstrates through its actions that it supports the resumption of the six-party process as a committed and constructive partner," Bosworth said.

The stalled six-party disarmament-for-aid talks include both Koreas, the United States, Japan, Russia and China.

"Before deciding on next steps to resume the process, the United States will consult closely with the Republic of Korea and our other partners in the six-party talks," he said.

Speaking earlier to reporters in Korean, Kim described the talks as "very constructive and businesslike."

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