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Hill Starts North Korean Visit
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Chief US nuclear negotiator Christopher Hill arrived in Pyongyang on Thursday in the latest US effort to convince North Korea to halt its nuclear weapons program.

Hill, who was invited to visit North Korea, is the first high-ranking US negotiator to visit in nearly five years.

Upon his arrival at the airport, Hill told Xinhua that he hoped to "get the six-party talks process moving."

Hill, a US assistant secretary of state, will focus on making progress on the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

"We hope we can make up for some time we lost this spring," said Hill, adding "I'm looking forward to the discussion about that."

Hill was greeted at the airport by Li Geun, director of North Korea Foreign Ministry's America Bureau.

Hill said he was here at the invitation of North Korea side but did not go into details about his schedule.

"I don't know yet (whom I am going to meet), my host, I think, will have the schedule," Hill said.

Hill's trip came after the resolution of a banking dispute that had held up progress of the six-party talks, which involve the United States, North Korea, China, Japan, South Korea and Russia.

North Korea's ambassador to Russia Kim Yong Che said earlier this week that the funds of US$25 million had arrived at the Central Bank of Russia and will be transferred to North Korean foreign trade bank via a Russian bank.

Hill is scheduled to conclude his trip on Friday.

(Xinhua News Agency June 21, 2007)

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