NK Nuclear Envoy to Visit US for Diplomatic Normalization Talks

Korea Times

The U.S. State Department confirmed Monday that a North Korean nuclear negotiator would visit the United States soon to start working group talks on bilateral diplomatic normalization, Yonhap News Agency reported.

Kim Kye-gwan, Pyongyang’s top envoy to the six-party nuclear talks, will go to San Francisco then travel to New York, where he will meet his Washington counterpart, Christopher Hill, Yonhap quoted the department as saying.

Department spokesman Sean McCormack said the Kim-Hill talks will be to both establish and hold the first round of the working group talks that address issues to be resolved for an eventual normalization of ties between the two countries.

A well-informed source told Yonhap, South Korea’s semi-official news service, last week that Kim will arrive in San Francisco on Thursday.

“I think that he (Kim) has meetings, potentially with some NGOs (nongovernmental organizations) out there in San Francisco,’’ McCormack was quoted as telling reporters.

“We are still working through the logistics of a meeting between him and Chris Hill. We expect the venue will be New York.’’

South and North Korea, the U.S., China, Russia and Japan, members of the so-called six-party process, struck a deal in Beijing on Feb. 13 under which Pyongyang would shut down its primary nuclear facilities in phases. In return, the North would receive heavy fuel oil as energy assistance.

The agreement establishes five working groups, including those to deal with diplomatic normalization between North Korea and the United States and between North Korea and Japan. The groups would meet within 30 days of the agreement.

Most of the contacts between Pyongyang and Washington are made in New York, where North Korea has a mission to the United Nations.


Comments are closed.