May 4, 2005: Headlines: Figures: COS - Cameroon: Diplomacy: New York Times: U.S. Envoy Christopher R. Hill Pessimistic Over North Korean Nuclear Program

Peace Corps Online: Peace Corps News: Library: January 23, 2005: Index: PCOL Exclusive: Diplomacy: Archive of Stories: April 12, 2005: Headlines: Figures: COS - Cameroon: Diplomacy: COS - Korea: LA Times: Christopher Hill, soon to be assistant secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific affairs, says long-stalled talks on nuclear arms can work : May 4, 2005: Headlines: Figures: COS - Cameroon: Diplomacy: New York Times: U.S. Envoy Christopher R. Hill Pessimistic Over North Korean Nuclear Program

By Admin1 (admin) ( - on Thursday, May 05, 2005 - 8:26 pm: Edit Post

U.S. Envoy Christopher R. Hill Pessimistic Over North Korean Nuclear Program

U.S. Envoy Christopher R. Hill Pessimistic Over North Korean Nuclear Program

U.S. Envoy Christopher R. Hill Pessimistic Over North Korean Nuclear Program

U.S. Envoy Pessimistic Over North Korean Nuclear Program

Published: April 29, 2005


SEOUL, April 29 - After a week of shuttle diplomacy to revive talks on dismantling North Korea's nuclear weapons program, the top American envoy for North Korea was asked here today "for an optimistic closing line."

"Give me week, and I will come up with one," Christopher R. Hill, the assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, replied at a news conference after meetings in Beijing, Tokyo and Seoul. "The fundamental issue is that North Korea still has not made its strategic decision to do away with its weapons."

In the 10 months since North Korea last participated in talks in Beijing, the Pyongyang leadership has publicly boasted of possessing a nuclear bomb arsenal as well as shutting down a reactor, in what is seen as a step to obtaining more bomb-making materials.

"Often when a country announces its membership in the nuclear club, the next step would be a test," Mr. Hill said, addressing a growing concern among North Korea's neighbors. "To go ahead and have a nuclear test at a time when the six-party talks are in abeyance would be extremely troublesome."

In each capital on his tour of Northeast Asia, Mr. Hill has given a news conference in which he has called for North Korea to return to the negotiating table.

"North Korea's response is rather hostile," said Mr. Hill, who was ambassador in Seoul until early this month. "The problem is that North Korea does not want to talk. We want to talk. They don't want to talk."

Mr. Hill's calls for negotiations seemed to be a strategy to make it clear in Japan, China and South Korea that the United States wants to revive the six-party process. If North Korea continues to ignore these appeals, it could set the stage for new tactics with the North.

"I don't want to get into details discussing other options, as that would undermine the six-party option," Mr. Hill said, when asked about the possibility of sanctions or of taking North Korea to the United Nations Security Council. "By definition, all those options are not as good as six-party option."

Reflecting growing tension here over the nuclear impasse, high-ranking South Korean officials have publicly called on North Korea to refrain from testing a nuclear bomb. South Korea's government, anxious to maintain good relations with its heavily armed neighbor, generally avoids criticizing the North.

But efforts to get talks back on track may have been undercut Thursday night by President Bush, who cited the North Korean leader by name 12 times in his White House press conference.

"Kim Jong Il is a dangerous person. He's a man who starves his people. He's got huge concentration camps," the president said a few hours before Mr. Hill gave his news conference here.

"There is concern about his capacity to deliver a nuclear weapon," Mr. Bush said. "We don't know if he can or not, but I think it's best when you're dealing with a tyrant like Kim Jong Il to assume he can."

"The more Kim Jong Il threatens and brags, the more isolated he becomes," Mr. Bush continued, asserting that North Korea's neighbors are increasingly united against the North's nuclear bomb program.

Referring to missile defense, the president added: "Perhaps Kim Jong Il has got the capacity to launch a weapon, and wouldn't it be nice to be able to shoot it down?"

South Koreans interviewed here today predicted that North Korea would not return to talks after such attacks on the supreme leader of a rigidly hierarchical society. This spring, North Korean diplomats said they would only return to the negotiating table if Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice apologized for including North Korea earlier this year on a list of six "outposts of tyranny."

"Even though President Bush noted the importance of the six-party talks, it looks pessimistic because North Korea has now heard those bad words from President Bush," said Kim Sung-Han, a professor of Korea-United States relations at the Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security in Seoul.

When this story was posted in May 2005, this was on the front page of PCOL:

The Peace Corps Library Date: March 27 2005 No: 536 The Peace Corps Library
Peace Corps Online is proud to announce that the Peace Corps Library is now available online. With over 30,000 index entries in 500 categories, this is the largest collection of Peace Corps related stories in the world. From Acting to Zucchini, you can find hundreds of stories about what RPCVs with your same interests or from your Country of Service are doing today. If you have a web site, support the "Peace Corps Library" and link to it today.

Top Stories and Breaking News PCOL Magazine Peace Corps Library RPCV Directory Sign Up

April 30, 2005: This Week's Top Stories Date: April 29 2005 No: 580 April 30, 2005: This Week's Top Stories
Carol Bellamy's approach earned her many critics 29 Apr
Vermont has highest per-capita PCVs in service 29 Apr
Jim Doyle to veto photo id voting bill 28 Apr
Tom Weisner sworn in as mayor of Aurora 28 Apr
Tony Hall says parents in Uganda must protect children 27 Apr
Ray Tidwell optimistic about the strawberry crop 27 Apr
Tom Petri pushes federal Student Aid Reward Act 26 Apr
Zell Miller illuminates his feud with Chris Matthews 26 Apr
The Estabrooks heading for Burkina Faso 26 Apr
James Walsh leads Nepal delegation 25 Apr
Michele Linnen opens Photography Show in Paris 25 Apr
Sam Farr opposes energy bill 25 Apr
Shiv Maira remembered by children in Turkmenistan 24 Apr
Juana Bordas works toward a "Multicultural Nation" 24 Apr
Christopher Hill consulting officials in Beijing, Tokyo and Seoul 23 Apr
PC says program in Uzbekistan is fully operational 23 Apr
John Platt's Andina named "Restaurant Of The Year" 22 Apr

April 30, 2005:  Special Events Date: April 29 2005 No: 579 April 30, 2005: Special Events
RPCV Writers scholarship in Baltimore - deadline June 1
Gary Edwards' music performed in Idaho on May 24
Jody Olsen speaks at Ivy College on May 6
Delano Lewis to speak in Albuquerque on May 2 25 Apr
Nepal RPCV film showing in Massachusetts on April 30
RPCVs: Post your stories or press releases here for inclusion next week.

Friends of the Peace Corps 170,000  strong Date: April 2 2005 No: 543 Friends of the Peace Corps 170,000 strong
170,000 is a very special number for the RPCV community - it's the number of Volunteers who have served in the Peace Corps since 1961. It's also a number that is very special to us because March is the first month since our founding in January, 2001 that our readership has exceeded 170,000. And while we know that not everyone who comes to this site is an RPCV, they are all "Friends of the Peace Corps." Thanks everybody for making PCOL your source of news for the Returned Volunteer community.

Read the stories and leave your comments.

Some postings on Peace Corps Online are provided to the individual members of this group without permission of the copyright owner for the non-profit purposes of criticism, comment, education, scholarship, and research under the "Fair Use" provisions of U.S. Government copyright laws and they may not be distributed further without permission of the copyright owner. Peace Corps Online does not vouch for the accuracy of the content of the postings, which is the sole responsibility of the copyright holder.

Story Source: New York Times

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; Figures; COS - Cameroon; Diplomacy



Add a Message

This is a public posting area. Enter your username and password if you have an account. Otherwise, enter your full name as your username and leave the password blank. Your e-mail address is optional.