08/20/2010, 00.00
NORTH KOREA - CHINA
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Beijing: North Korea "ready" for dialogue on nuclear program

In limbo since 2008, the six-party talks on nuclear program could re-start very soon. Beijing calls on regional powers to "put the Cheonan sinking behind them”.

Seoul (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The North Korean government has reached an agreement with China to resume international talks on the interruption of its nuclear program. This was reported today by the regime’s official press agency. Beijing (Pyongyang’s only ally) has called on regional powers to put the sinking of the South Korea corvette Cheonan “behind them” and return to the negotiating table.

According to Seoul and Washington, a submarine from the North fired a missile at the South’s ship, killing 46 sailors on board. Pyongyang, for its part, denies any involvement, but the tensions derived from the sinking have even further isolated North Korea, already under fire for abandoning the so-called "six-party nuclear talks."

The talks involve China, North Korea, South Korea, Japan, Russia and the U.S. have been in limbo since 2008, as have attempts to find a way to peacefully end the North Korean nuclear program. Chinese state media today reported that, earlier this week, a delegation led by chief nuclear negotiator Wu Dawei of China visited Pyongyang

According to KCNA, the official agency of the regime, "the two sides had held “in-depth discussions on the regional situation and the bilateral relations of friendship and matters of mutual concern including the resumption of the six-party talks and the denuclearization of the whole Korean Peninsula. They reached a full consensus of views on all the matters discussed. "
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