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South Korean Negotiator: All Sides Should Build Up Mutual Trust

South Korean top negotiator to the six-party talks on the Korean nuclear issue Song Min-soon said in Beijing on Tuesday that all sides should take measures to build up mutual trust, so as to implement the joint statement reached at the previous round of talks.


He made the remarks at a press briefing after the South Korean delegation held bilateral consultation with the North Korean delegation and had a brief meeting with the Russian delegation on Tuesday evening.


The South Korean delegation, which arrived in Beijing on Monday, also held consultation with the Chinese delegation on the procedure of the upcoming fifth-round talks and on how to reduce differences among the six parties, said Song.


He said that during his meeting with North Korean top negotiator Kim Kye-gwan, the two sides discussed how to fulfill the commitments made in the joint statement, and the two sides have both "common understandings" and "slight differences" in this regard.


Both sides agreed to abide by the principles outlined in the joint statement, he said.


According to him, all the involved parties are expected to express their views in the first phase of the fifth-round talks, which will help lay a foundation for the discussion of a more effective agreement in the next phase.


All sides have agreed that the fifth-round talks shall include, as in the previous rounds, both plenary sessions and bilateral consultations, said Song, adding that hopefully an action plan for all the parties might be worked out in the second phase of the talks.


(Xinhua News Agency November 9, 2005)

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