U.S. envoy wraps up talks in North Korea
A top Bush administration envoy left North Korea Friday after days of talk with Korean leaders over a crumbling nuclear disarmament deal.
The envoy, Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill, had been in Pyongyang since Wednesday and was seeking a deal that would have allowed monitors to check up on North Korea's nuclear program in exchange for better trading ties and international standing, Reuters reports.
According to the New York Times, Hill has yet to elaborate on the details of his trip, refusing to call it a success until he reports to Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice.
Hill was quoted in the New York Times as describing the talks as ‚Äúdetailed and very substantive.‚Ä?
There is growing concern about North Korea's nuclear intentions as they began to reassemble a nuclear processing plant in Yongbyon.
The plant, which was shut down in 2007 as part of a nuclear disarmament agreement, is the only known source of weapons-grade plutonium for North Korea, reports Reuters.
The New York Times describes the 2007 disarmament agreement North Korea struck with the United States, China, Russia, Japan and South Korea as a ‚Äúcrucial diplomatic achievement of the Bush administration.‚Ä? The deal seems to be falling apart though as North Korea is angry that it has not been removed from the United States list of state sponsors of terrorism.