Russia's top nuclear envoy visits Seoul

11th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

Russia's chief nuclear envoy held talks in Seoul Monday amid efforts to revive long-stalled international nuclear disarmament negotiations with North Korea.

Alexei Borodavkin met his South Korean counterpart Wi Sung-Lac to discuss the six-party talks and currents events on the Korean peninsula, and told reporters he had "fruitful" discussions.

"The task we need to achieve is to alleviate tensions on the Korean peninsula," Borodavkin said.

"Participating parties have conditions for resuming the six-party talks and the conditions must be met to restart the talks."

Borodavkin was also to meet new Foreign Minister Kim Sung-Hwan and deputy foreign minister Kim Jae-Shin during his three-day visit to talk about other issues, a ministry spokesman said.

The six-party forum, aimed at curbing Pyongyang's nuclear ambitions in exchange for aid, is chaired by the communist nation's close ally China and also involves the two Koreas, the United States, Japan and Russia.

Pyongyang bolted the forum in April 2009 and conducted its second nuclear test a month later.

North Korea's intentions still remain unclear with recent satellite images suggesting it may be restoring facilities at its main Yongbyon nuclear reactor, where it produced weapons-grade plutonium.

A senior Seoul presidential aide said last week the North's nuclear programme had reached a "very alarming level".

© 2010 AFP

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