N Korea aiding in atomic shutdown, says IAEA | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, August 18, 2007 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, August 18, 2007

N Korea aiding in atomic shutdown, says IAEA

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North Korea is cooperating with UN experts supervising the shutdown of its plutonium-producing reactor and monitoring its other nuclear facilities, the International Atomic Energy Agency said yesterday.
In a report prepared for next month's meeting of the agency's 35-nation board, IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei said his experts have been able to monitor and verify the nuclear programme's status "with the cooperation of the DPRK" the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.
In Shenyang, China, the chief US nuclear negotiator said two days of technical talks on North Korea's nuclear programme ended Friday with progress on the process of declaring and disabling the country's nuclear facilities.
"I think we now have the basis for achieving consensus on these issues and consensus on the way forward," Christopher Hill told reporters.
Hill said the meetings in northeastern China were "very businesslike, very specific" in discussing the technical issues.
The working-group session achieved some common ideas that will move forward the process of declaring and disabling Pyongyang's nuclear facilities, Christopher Hill said.
"I think we now have the basis for achieving consensus on these issues and consensus on the way forward," he told reporters.
Hill said the meetings in northeastern China were "very business like, very specific" in discussing the technical issues.
Progress on resolving the dispute over North Korea's nuclear programmes has quickened since a February agreement which also involved Japan, South Korea, China and Russia under which the North pledged to make a full declaration of all its nuclear programmes and disable them in exchange for heavy fuel oil and other energy assistance.
North Korea shut down its sole operating nuclear reactor in July as part of that agreement. The sides now have to work out the technical details surrounding North Korea's full declaration of its nuclear programmes, and a schedule and methods under which they would be disabled.
Hill said the declaration and disablement of the facilities could go ahead at roughly the same.

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