North Korea to suspend nuclear disablement

The United States has not taken the North off its list of state sponsors of terrorism.

North Korea to suspend nuclear disablement
North Korea said on Tuesday it would suspend disablement of its nuclear facilities and consider restoring the Yongbyon nuclear reactor, accusing the United States of violating a disarmament deal.

"We have decided to immediately suspend disabling our nuclear facilities," the North's KCNA news agency quoted a foreign ministry official as saying.

"This measure has been effective on Aug. 14 and related parties have been notified of it," the official said.

Regional powers have been pressing North Korea to accept stringent measures to verify the declaration it made in July of its nuclear programme.

The United States has not taken the North off its list of state sponsors of terrorism.

The announcement comes after comments on Monday by the U.S. envoy for nuclear talks with the communist state that he had "substantive" talks with his North Korean counterpart.

U.S. State Department spokesman Sean McCormack, travelling with Secretary Condoleezza Rice in Jerusalem, said he had no immediate comment on the KCNA report.

Pyongyang's latest move also follows a joint statement the previous day by the leaders of South Korea and China, the nearest the reclusive North has to an ally, urging cooperation in implementing the deal to end North Korea's nuclear weapons programme.

Disablement work that started in late 2007 at Yongbyon has mostly been completed and it was aimed at making it impossible for the North to resume operations there for at least a year.

Reuters
Güncelleme Tarihi: 26 Ağustos 2008, 12:14
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