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S. Korea's chief nuclear envoy, U.S. point man on Pyongyang to meet in Vienna

All Headlines 16:16 November 10, 2011

SEOUL, Nov. 10 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's chief nuclear envoy, Lim Sung-nam, will visit Vienna next week for talks with the top U.S. official on North Korea policy on joint efforts to end Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programs, Seoul's foreign ministry said Thursday.

During the two-day trip starting Monday, Lim will meet with Glyn Davies, the newly appointed U.S. special representative for North Korea policy, to discuss the two countries' joint approach to the nuclear-armed state following a second round of high-level talks between Pyongyang and Washington last month, Foreign Ministry spokesman Cho Byung-jae told a press briefing.

Both North Korea and the U.S. reported some progress, but no breakthrough, from their bilateral meeting in Geneva. The meeting aimed at restarting broader negotiations on ending North Korea's nuclear weapons programs in exchange for economic and political aid.

The six-party talks, also involving South Korea, Japan, China and Russia, have been dormant since April 2009 amid tensions over Pyongyang's continued pursuit of nuclear weapons and military provocations.

Seoul and Washington demand Pyongyang take concrete steps toward denuclearization, including a monitored shutdown of its uranium enrichment plant, before the six-party talks resume. Pyongyang insists the talks should reopen without any preconditions attached.

Lim will be meeting Davies for the first time since he took office last month. Davies has yet to step down from his current post as U.S. ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), based in Vienna, but took part in last month's talks with Pyongyang in his capacity as the next U.S. special representative for North Korea policy.

Cho also confirmed that South Korea, Japan and the U.S. are seeking to hold trilateral talks on the margins of the East Asia Summit in Bali, Indonesia, next week. During the talks, Lim would joined by his Japanese counterpart to the six-party talks, Shinsuke Sugiyama, and Kurt Campbell, assistant U.S. secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, the spokesman said.

In the Austrian capital, Lim also plans to meet Yukiya Amano, director general of the IAEA, and other senior officials from the organization to discuss cooperation in resolving the North Korean nuclear issue.


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