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Hill in Beijing to push denuclearization process
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Top US nuclear negotiator Christopher Hill arrived in Beijing on Monday, aiming to push the denuclearization process of the Korean peninsula.


If North Korea prepares to give a complete and correct declaration, the United States "can work on timing and sequencing", Hill told reporters after meeting with some Chinese officials.


"I'm not too concerned about the sequencing of their obligations and our obligations," Hill said. "I think there are ways to deal with the sequencing. I think the real problem is they have not been willing to provide a complete and correct declaration."


As to a potential meeting with any representatives from North Korea, Hill said nothing has been set up but he wanted to know whether they were interested in planning such a meeting.


Hill said he may meet and discuss with his Chinese counterpart, Wu Dawei, who is not in China, later this month in Japan.


The envoy's visit comes ahead of US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's trip to China, South Korea and Japan from Feb. 23 to Feb. 28.


Earlier this month, the United States said it was ready to open full diplomatic ties with North Korea if it completely gives up its nuclear weapons and programs.


The six-party talks held in Beijing last February reached a nuclear deal, where North Korea agreed to disable its nuclear reactor and declare all nuclear programs and facilities by the end of last year to pave the way for dismantlement. However, North Korea missed the deadline, although there was reported progress in its nuclear declaration.


The United States has stressed North Korea would not be taken off the list of "state sponsors of terrorism" until it has made a full declaration of its nuclear activities.


(Xinhua News Agency February 19, 2008)

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