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Clinton says envoy prepared to go to North Korea

Clinton says envoy prepared to go to North Korea

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Wednesday that a senior U.S. special envoy for North Korea had been prepared to go to North Korea for talks at a moment's notice during a trip last week to Asia.
Instead, she told reporters, the North Koreans did not allow Stephen Bosworth to visit Pyongyang for discussions on stalled international nuclear disarmament talks.
"He was not invited to go to North Korea, which we regret," Clinton said after meeting with Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi.
Clinton said the Obama administration remains committed to restarting the six-nation talks "at the earliest possible moment." Those discussions have stalled over the North's refusal to commit to a process to verify its nuclear programs.
Clinton also urged the North Koreans to give the world "evidence" of "their willingness to re-engage with all of us and to work together."
North Korea has been highly critical of the United States in recent weeks, accusing it of using annual military exercises with South Korea to prepare for an invasion. Washington denies that.
Also stoking tensions has been the North's intention to fire a rocket, which it says will be a satellite, but South Korea's government and others believe will be a test of a long-range missile capable of striking U.S. territory.
Clinton said the United States has been "outspoken in our opposition to the North Koreans' missile launch."
She said the United States, South Korea, Russia, Japan and China "are also agreed that we will discuss a response if we are not successful in convincing them not to go forward with what is a very provocative act," a missile test.
She spoke of "a range of options available to take action against the North Koreans in the wake of the missile launch, if they pursue that," but she also said the six-nation nuclear talks could be resumed.
"The goal of denuclearizing the Korean peninsula remains a paramount goal, and the six-party talks framework should be restarted so that we can begin to work on that," Clinton said.
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Associated Press writer Desmond Butler contributed to this story.


Updated : 2020-12-03 02:39 GMT+08:00