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Morning Walk-Thru At 6-Party Talks, Dec 6, 2007

Christopher R. Hill, Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs
Kerry Center Hotel
Beijing, China
December 6, 2007

Morning Walk-Through at Six-Party Talks

ASSISTANT SECRETARY HILL: Hi, I am just going to see Wu Dawei right now and brief him on my trip to the DPRK, and then I will ask him how we stand on the Six-Party meeting. And I will talk to him about travel schedules and see what is feasible. I have been in touch with my ROK counterpart. I also, tomorrow, will see Ken Sasae at Narita. This afternoon I will see the Russian Ambassador and brief him on what has been going on. I think we will all be in touch.

QUESTION: Mr. Hill, at this point how do you anticipate that the declaration will be transmitted to the Six Parties?

ASSISTANT SECRETARY HILL: I think the correct procedure is to the Chinese. I want to talk to Wu Dawei and see how he sees that happening. I think we want to make sure that when they do transfer even a first draft that it is a creditable effort. I felt, in that vein, that our conversations were useful in Pyongyang, but I need to talk to Wu Dawei about all that. OK. And speaking of Wu Dawei, I am kind of late.

QUESTION: What is your schedule today?

ASSISTANT SECRETARY HILL: I think I see Mr. Wu Dawei, and then see Vice-Minister Zhang at 11:00, and the Russian Ambassador in the early afternoon. So I think I have lunch free.

QUESTION: Mr. Hill, is one of the questions waiting to be resolved whether North Korea in fact received gas centrifuge cylinders from Pakistan?

ASSISTANT SECRETARY HILL: Well, we have had a lot of discussions with them about uranium enrichment. As you know, we have consistently maintained - and I would say with very good evidence coming from more than one source - that they made some purchases of materials and equipment entirely consistent with a gas centrifuge program, materials including means to build gas centrifuges, patterning them after the Pakistani model that we also have information that they received.

Now we are trying to have these conversations with a view to resolving the issue. The number one issue is, we want to be completely sure that they don't have any ongoing program. The number two issue is, we want to know what they have been up to in the past. Now a lot of people try to suggest that what is past is past, but actually I think being clear about what has happened is also a means for us to build the future relationship. So I would not just say that the past is the past. I think the past is also a prologue in this regard. We need to know what they are doing. We need to get them to step up and show some trust in us and some trust in the process so that we can go forward.

We are not playing a game of "got you." We are not trying to create new problems. We are trying to resolve issues and move on. So it is a very delicate negotiation -- or discussion, I should say. But I am confident that we have made some progress on it. And I am confident that we will be able to resolve this, as the DPRK said we would when they made their statement in the denuclearization working group in Shenyang that this matter would be resolved to mutual satisfaction. OK. I am really late for Wu Dawei. So see you later.

QUESTION: What time do you think you will be coming back?

ASSISTANT SECRETARY HILL: I don't know, because I will meet with Wu Dawei at 9:00. I think my next meeting is at 11:00. So I am not sure. Be in touch with the Embassy. All right? Bye bye.

# # #

Released on December 6, 2007


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