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China Hopes for Early Resumption of US-DPRK Talks
China hopes that the United States and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) will resume talks at an early date, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue said Tuesday.

In response to questions on the DPRK nuclear issue at a routine press conference, Zhang said that no party should take any further action that could escalate the situation.

China held that dialog was the most effective way to settle the issue and the most important thing at present was to resume talks between all parties concerned, which was crucial to peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula, she said.

China was ready to work with the parties concerned to push for an early and peaceful solution to the nuclear issue, Zhang said, adding that China would not object if those parties would like to hold talks in Beijing.

The spokeswoman expressed China's desire that all parties concerned make concerted efforts to settle the issue properly, saying China had kept in close and frequent contact with all concerned.

Reiterating the Chinese government's position on the issue, Zhang said China disagreed to the DPRK's withdrawal from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and advocated the non-nuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

China held that maintaining an international mechanism of nuclear non-proliferation was in the interests of the international community.

The DPRK announced its withdrawal from the NPT last Friday, a move that further escalated the nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula.

(Xinhua News Agency January 15, 2003)

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