Deputy Foreign Minister Wu Dawei and his DPRK counterpart Kim Kye-gwan yesterday discussed the current situation of the Korean Peninsula denuclearization process, as well as the second working group meeting of the six parties.
Kim also met with US top nuclear negotiator Christopher Hill. Hill and negotiators from the Republic of Korea (ROK), Japan and Russia reached Beijing yesterday.
They, along with Wu and Kim, will proceed to Shenyang, capital of Northeast China's Liaoning Province, for the two-day six-party working group meeting from Thursday.
Hill, who is also the US assistant secretary of state, is scheduled to hold one-on-one talks with Wu today.
The Shenyang meeting is aimed at preparing the ground for progress at the next full session of disarmament talks in Beijing in a few weeks, Hill said.
"We want a clear idea about what's involved in disablement, what's involved in declaration so that when we have our six-party talks... we can make real progress," he said.
It is important to have successful working group meetings and the six parties will probably list their options on how to implement the second phase of disabling the DPRK's nuclear facilities
The "declaration and disablement" process is the second most important phase of the landmark pact signed on February 13 that saw the DPRK agree to end its nuclear program in return for fuel, security guarantees and diplomatic concessions.
The chief delegates to the six-party talks agreed at their last meeting in July to hold the working group meetings by the end of August to pave the way for a full session in early September, followed by a meeting of their foreign ministers.
The Shenyang meeting follows one on energy aid held in the Korean border truce village of Panmunjom last week.
The Russia-chaired working group meeting on establishing a peace mechanism in Northeast Asia is scheduled for later this month. The exact date and place, however, are yet to be decided for the two other working group meetings for normalizing ties between Japan and the DPRK, and the US and the DPRK.
(China Daily August 14, 2007)