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Hill's New Korean Role An Active Signal: Expert
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Chinese analysts welcomed Chris Hill's possible new role as a policy coordinator for Pyongyang, saying it is an active signal from the US side towards a final solution to the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula.

Hill is expected to be designated the new special Korea policy coordinator, a position created by the US Congress in an attempt to encourage changes in the Bush administration's approach towards Pyongyang.

Fan Jishe, a senior researcher with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the action showed that Washington would "invest more energy in the nuclear issue with more flexibility."

He said Washington has smelled the sense of urgency after Pyongyang launched its nuclear test on October 9 and is ready to make further efforts to realize the goal of a nuclear free Korean Peninsula.

According to Fan, the US policy towards the Pyongyang has never been unified, describing it as "kick the can down the road" by different political groups.

However, Fan noted that if Hill could be authorized with more powers in coordinating the US policy for Pyongyang among the US ministries and departments, the appointment would be a very positive move.

Fan said Hill is a suitable candidate for the post, as it would avoid making an overlapping position since he is also the US chief negotiator of the six-party talks and has been deeply involved in the discussion in recent years.

(China Daily December 8, 2006)

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