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N Korea Blames US for Blocking Resumption of Six-Party Talks
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North Korea on Wednesday lashed out at the United States for blocking the resumption of six-party talks, the country's leading official newspaper Rodong Sinmun reported.

North Korea said the United States has only pretended to make efforts to resume the six-party talks. "In fact, it is none other than the US which is blocking off all the access routes to them," said a signed comment published by the newspaper.

The comment also accused the United States of preparing a series of military exercises and arms buildup against North Korea. It said North Korea would use its "strong self-defense deterrent" to "shatter the moves of the US imperialists to provoke a war."

North Korea conducted its first nuclear test on Oct. 9 last year, prompting a harsh reaction from the international community and sanctions from the UN Security Council.

US Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill and North Korea's negotiator Kim Kye-Gwan  met in Berlin on Tuesday to discuss how they could resume the six-party talks.

(Xinhua News Agency January 17, 2007)

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