U.S. announces six-party talks precondition
The U.S. says the U.N. and other countries must recognize N.Korea’s UEP is a violation of Security Council resolutions
Posted on : Mar.11,2011 14:42 KST
By Kwon Tae-ho, Washington Correspondent
The U.S. announced Wednesday that it would be unable to proceed with a resumption of the six-party talks without addressing North Korea’s uranium enrichment program (UEP).
Robert Einhorn, U.S. State Department coordinator for Iran and North Korea sanctions, met with journalists Wednesday (local time) after attending a U.S. Arms Control Association-sponsored seminar in Washington on sanctions against Iran.
“In order for the talks to resume, the United Nations and international community would have to clearly indicate that the uranium enrichment in Yongbyon and outside of Yongbyon are violations of existing Security Council resolutions and of the September 2005 six-party joint statement,” Einhorn said.
He added, “The North Korean program cannot and should not be legitimized, and clearly establishing the illegality of the UEP is the only sound basis for resuming six-party talks.”
Einhorn also said Washington was awaiting the results of discussions on the UEP issue that are currently under way with the United Nations Security Council.
During a visit to South Korea on Mar. 2, Einhorn said that Seoul and Washington were pursuing a UNSC president’s statement in response to North Korea’s uranium enrichment.
However, when asked whether resolution of the UEP issue was a prerequisite for resuming the six-party talks, Einhorn declined to give a concrete answer, saying that he did not want to talk about the conditions. At the same time, he reiterated, “If the six-party talks are to be promising and successful, it is important to recognize that this enrichment program is a violation of North Korea’s commitment.”
This indicated a determination by the Barack Obama administration that even if the UEP issue is not completely resolved prior to the six-party talks, it should at least be clearly stipulated as a “violation.” The Obama administration has been carefully pushing for dialogue with Pyongyang through the medium of humanitarian aid to the country, which has reportedly been in the throes of a serious food crisis.
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