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Hill: BDA Issue Not Problem for Six-Party Talks Process
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US top nuclear negotiator Christopher Hill Saturday said the Banco Delta Asia (BDA) issue would not be a problem for the process of the six-party talks.

"I don't believe we would have any problem with the BDA issue," Hill said at a hotel in Beijing Saturday night.

North Korea would not shut down the Yongbyon nuclear reactor if the United States did not first lift financial bans on North Korea accounts in the BDA, a Macao-based bank, North Korea chief negotiator Kim Kye-Gwan said upon arrival in Beijing Saturday morning.
Hill, who arrived Wednesday, said, "I think we have a way out that should meet their needs," but added he did not want to go into details.

Hill attended the denuclearization working group meeting Saturday. He said it was a good day and things were "on schedule" and he briefed the members of the North Korea delegation on the BDA issue.

"I gave them some details and facts about the case that we didn't brief before," Hill said. "I do believe we will fulfill our commitment on BDA."

He said North Korea gave a statement that is very balanced and indicated they are under way and fulfilling their obligations.

On the HEU (Highly Enriched Uranium) issue, Hill said he raised the issue Saturday. "We had an agreement with North Korea that we would be discussing this issue and would solve it to mutual satisfactions."

He said he expected to schedule a time and a venue for the discussion of HEU issue on Sunday and Monday.

"I would like to finalize that plan, because it is very important to resolve the matter at the outset of the next phase," Hill said.

Hill said the denuclearization working group meeting will continue on Sunday and he may have some bilateral meetings.

The fresh round of six-party talks, involving China, North Korea, the United States, South Korea, Japan and Russia, are scheduled to open on Monday. Besides Kim and Hill, chief negotiators of South Korea and Japan have also arrived in Beijing.

(Xinhua News Agency March 18, 2007)

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