North Korea may disable nuke program soon
A South Korean official said North Korea may substantially disable its main nuclear reactor ahead of a year-end deadline sought in the six-nation deal.
Baek Jong-chun, senior aide to South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun, said Wednesday the North may complete the process by the middle of November, long before the deadline it agreed to in talks with the United States, South Korea, China, Russia and Japan, the South Korean Yonhap news agency reported.
The report said critics have said North Korea is using the six-party nuclear talks to buy time and doesn't plan to give up its nuclear weapons programs. There have also been conflicting reports about North Korea meeting the year-end deadline, Yonhap said.
“There is a controversy over whether North Korea has the will to denuclearize. If I say it is 100 percent sure that the North has the will, it would be a lie. In my personal view, however, it has a clear will for denuclearization,” Baek was quoted as saying.
Next week, South Korea plans to host a new round of working-level talks among the six nations to implement the agreement. // Copyright 2007 by United Press International