S. Korea, China, U.S. speed up talks to resolve North Korea nuke issue
China's top nuclear envoy Wu Dawei began a two-day meeting with his U.S. counterpart Glyn Davies in Washington on Monday, stirring up speculation about a possible resumption of the six-party denuclearization talks.
U.S. State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said that Wu held productive discussions on issues related to North Korea with a number of senior diplomats in Washington.
She added that the U.S. and China see eye-to-eye on the fundamental importance of denuclearizing the North and explained that Wu's visit is part of bilateral efforts to find a peaceful solution to the problem.
The Chinese diplomat's trip, the first since April, represents Beijing's active efforts for reviving the long-stalled six-party talks involving the two Koreas, the U.S., China, Japan and Russia.
Wu may try to persuade officials in Washington by referring to Pyongyang's change in attitude, based on his meeting with his North Korean counterpart Kim Kye-gwan in Beijing last month.
And with South Korea's top nuclear negotiator Cho Tae-yong expected to visit Washington early next month, Seoul's foreign ministry expressed hopes for solid progress to be made on denuclearizing the North.
"China's Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Affairs Wu Dawei is visiting the United States and Korea's Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Peace and Security Affairs Cho Tae-yong is also planning a visit there. We are expecting this to be an opportunity for close consultation."
While some experts are hopeful that the latest round of diplomacy will speed up moves for resuming the multilateral dialogue, the U.S. reiterated that the North must give up its nuclear program before returning to talks, adding that the ball lies in North Korea's court.
Hwang Sung-hee, Arirang News.
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