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China proposes six-party talks in early December
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China on Tuesday called for joint efforts from all parties in the six-party talks on the Korean Peninsula nuclear issue to push for new progress.

"China has proposed to hold the six-party chief negotiators meeting on Dec. 8, and is in contact with other parties over the final schedule," said Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang.

He called on all parties to implement the second phase action in a comprehensive and balanced way.

The U.S. State Department on Monday said it expected the upcoming talks to come up with a formal agreement over the verification of nuclear disarmament.

The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) agreed in 2007 in talks with the United States, China, the Republic of Korea (ROK), Japan and Russia to disable its Yongbyon nuclear facility in exchange for economic aid and political concessions, including removing it from the U.S. list of countries supporting terrorism.

But the accord had been stalled by disputes over the verification of a nuclear declaration between the DPRK and the United States.

The DPRK stopped disabling its nuclear facilities in August in retaliation for Washington's failure to remove the country from its list of terrorism-sponsoring states.

After U.S. envoy Christopher Hill paid a three-day visit to Pyongyang in early October and struck a verification deal with the DPRK to save the stalled six-party talks, the Bush administration dropped the country from the list on Oct. 11.

The previous six-party chief negotiators meeting, involving China, the DPRK, Japan, the ROK, Russia and the United States, was held from July 10-12 in Beijing.

(Xinhua News Agency November 26, 2008)

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