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N. Korean vice FM urges U.S. be more proactive for talks

All Headlines 07:10 September 28, 2011

NEW YORK, Sept. 27 (Yonhap) -- A senior North Korean diplomat demanded Tuesday that the United States be more active in bilateral talks, claiming the nuclear issue on the peninsula stems from Washington.

Delivering a speech at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, Vice Foreign Minister Pak Gil-yon also reiterated Pyongyang's rhetoric that it will continue efforts for lasting peace on the peninsula.

"Accomplishing the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula through dialogue and negotiations is a dying wish of (late) President Kim Il-sung," he said. "Now that the root of the nuclear problem on the Korean Peninsula lies in the U.S., it should actively pursue dialogue with North Korea."

His remarks came as Washington is apparently weighing additional high-level talks with the communist nation to pave the way for the resumption of the six-party talks on its nuclear weapons drive. South Korea's top nuclear envoy had another meeting with his North Korean counterpart, Ri Yong-ho, last week in Beijing.

"Without the U.S. nuclear threats, the nuclear problem on the Korean Peninsula would have not occurred," Pak said. "Scrapping hostile policy on North Korea and removing the nuclear threat is the only way to attain the denuclearization and peace on the Korean Peninsula."

North Korea will make "constant efforts to establish a solid and permanent peace mechanism on the Korean Peninsula," he added.

On the Middle East, meanwhile, Pak said Pyongyang supports the Palestinian bid for statehood.

"In 1998, North Korea already acknowledged Palestine as a state. We support its U.N. membership and the aspiration of Palestinian people will be realized."

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