China appeals for flexibility, progress in Six Party talks

Updated: 2006-12-12 18:02

China hopes that nations taking part in renewed talks next week on North Korea's nuclear program will be flexible in order to make substantial progress, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said Tuesday.

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Participants should "show flexibility and a pragmatic attitude and take concrete steps to achieve positive results" during the six-nation negotiations, ministry spokesman Qin Gang said.

Beijing announced Monday that the talks will resume on December 18, ending a 13-month boycott by Pyongyang in protest at US financial sanctions.

"We believe that the success of the talks depends on whether the results move toward the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, whether it goes in the direction of peace and stability in northeast Asia," Qin said at a regular briefing.

He said there will be bilateral and multilateral meetings among the envoys of the six countries, but he did not give details.

The talks will be attended by host China, the US, North Korea, South Korea, Japan and Russia.

Discussions will focus on how to implement a joint declaration of September 19, 2005, in which the North agreed to abandon its nuclear development program in exchange for aid and security guarantees, Qin said.

The resumption of the talks shows that the negotiators "are ready to explore how to implement their obligations and commitments" outlined in the declaration.

It is hoped all parties will implement the joint statement in a "comprehensive and balanced way," Qin said.

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