US, ROK rebuff call to restart 6-party talks

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South Korean Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton agreed Wednesday the stalled six-party talks should not be resumed until the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) shows a " responsible attitude" towards its recent provocation, the foreign ministry in Seoul said.

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Kim met with Hillary Clinton on the sidelines of a summit meeting of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, currently being held in Kazakhstan.

During the bilateral meeting, Clinton reiterated the U.S. commitment to defending South Korea and pledged to deal resolutely with the DPRK's artillery bombardment last Tuesday of an inhabited South Korean border island, which killed two civilians and two marines, according to the ministry.

The two agreed that the DPRK should first behave responsibly with regards to what Seoul and Washington say was an unprovoked attack and demonstrate its genuine will for denuclearization before resuming the long-stalled talks, the ministry said.

The six-party talks involves DPRK, South Korea, China, the United States, Russia and Japan.

China has recently proposed "emergency consultations"among the heads of delegations to the six-party talks to help defuse tensions on the Korean peninsula. Seoul has practically dismissed the call, citing the inappropriate timing.

The two top diplomats have agreed to meet next week in Washington for more discussion, according to the ministry.

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