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Bush v. NKorea - 2nd Half 2003

From USNews: Nation & World 7/21/03
Upping the ante for Kim Jong Il
Pentagon Plan 5030, a new blueprint for facing down North Korea
By Bruce B. Auster and Kevin Whitelaw
Within the past two months, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has ordered U.S. military commanders to devise a new war plan for a possible conflict with North Korea. Elements of the draft, known as Operations Plan 5030, are so aggressive that they could provoke a war, some senior Bush administration officials tell U.S. News. ...

From The NYT: July 22, 2003
President Takes a Softer Stance on North Korea
CRAWFORD, Tex., July 21 — President Bush appeared today to shrug off evidence that North Korea may have begun producing plutonium at a second, hidden nuclear facility, and avoided any hint of confrontation with the country as it races to expand its nuclear arsenal. "The desire by the North Koreans to convince the world that they're in the process of developing a nuclear arsenal is nothing new," Mr. Bush said, striking a far more moderate tone than in March, when he declared that the United States would not tolerate a nuclear North Korea. ...
Nearly two weeks ago, North Korean officials declared that they had completed reprocessing 8,000 spent nuclear fuel rods, enough to make about a half dozen nuclear bombs. American officials, however, have not been able to verify that. ...

From Bloomberg: July 22, 2003 11:34 EDT
Powell Says N. Korea has `No Future' in Arm Pursuit
U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said North Korea must abandon its efforts to develop a nuclear weapons program and reiterated that the U.S. alone isn't responsible for stopping the threat. ``North Korea has to understand that it has, there is, no future'' in pursuing nuclear weapons, Powell told reporters in Washington after meeting with House of Representatives Speaker Dennis Hastert. ...

From AFP at SpaceWar: Jul 22, 2003
Powell says US seeks "permanent" solution for North Korea
WASHINGTON (AFP) US Secretary of State Colin Powell said Tuesday that Washington is searching for a "permanent" solution to address North Korea's nuclear weapons program. "We want a permanent solution that is irrevocable," the chief US diplomat said during a press conference here with the Republican speaker of the House of Representatives, Dennis Hastert. ... Earlier Tuesday, the White House denied press reports that it would offer North Korea a non-aggression guarantee if the northeast Asian nation stops its nuclear weapons programs.

From The Sydney Morning Herald: July 24 2003
Prepare for a war in Korea, PM told
By Geoff Kitney, Political Editor
An influential think tank has urged the Federal Government to make contingency plans for war with North Korea, which it says could occur even if the key players do not want it to. While the Australian Strategic Policy Institute said it believes war is less likely than a continuing stalemate or a diplomatic deal to defuse the crisis, it warned that there is a serious risk that miscalculation by North Korea or the United States could trigger a conflict. It said that such a war would involve large scale hostilities which would suck in other countries in the region, including Australia. ...

From The NYT: July 30, 2003
U.S. Urges South Korea to Be Tougher With North
SEOUL, South Korea, July 30 — The senior American envoy on arms control pressured South Korean officials today to adopt a tough policy on North Korea as part of a coordinated international effort to force North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program. United States Undersecretary of State John Bolton, in meetings with South Korea's foreign minister and aides to President Roh Moo Hyun, lobbied for South Korea's support to bring the North Korean nuclear issue before the United Nations Security Council. The American diplomat also sought South Korean support for proposed multilateral negotiations with North Korea and a military coalition capable of blockading shipment by North Korea of weapons of mass destruction, heroin and counterfeit funds. ...

From Reuters: Fri August 1, 2003 11:40 AM ET
N.Korea Offers Six-Way Nuclear Crisis Talks
By Samuel Len and Patricia Wilson
SEOUL/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - North Korea said on Friday it has proposed six-way talks with its North Asian neighbors and the United States on its nuclear weapons program, but made clear it had not yet given up hope of a one-on-one meeting with the Americans. A Foreign Ministry spokesman said North Korean officials had met U.S. counterparts in New York on Thursday and proposed holding the six-way talks, which would also include China, Japan, Russia and South Korea. ...

From NDTV (India): Monday, August 4, 2003
US will not destabilise N Korea: Powell
(Washington): The United States is committed to finding a diplomatic solution to North Korea's nuclear standoff, despite harsh rhetoric by high US officials, said Secretary of State Colin Powell. He further added the US was not trying to end communist leader Kim Jong Il's rule. ...

From Thursday's Globe and Mail: Thursday, Aug. 7, 2003 2:00 AM EDT
N. Korea next to hear U.S. war drum
Beijing — A senior Pentagon adviser has given details of a war strategy for invading North Korea and toppling its regime within 30 to 60 days, adding muscle to a lobbying campaign by U.S. hawks urging a pre-emptive military strike against Pyongyang's nuclear facilities. ...
Former CIA director James Woolsey, a Pentagon adviser and close ally of Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, gave the most explicit glimpse into the thinking of U.S. military planners this week when he revealed the details of a possible plan of attack against North Korea. The plan would include 4,000 daily air strikes against North Korean targets, the deployment of cruise missiles and stealth aircraft to destroy the Yongbyon nuclear plant and other nuclear facilities, the stationing of U.S. Marine forces off the coasts of North Korea to threaten a land attack on Pyongyang, the deployment of two additional U.S. Army divisions to bolster South Korean troops in a land offensive against North Korea, and the call-up of National Guard and Reserve units to replace U.S. combat forces that are currently bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan.
"Massive air power is the key to being able both to destroy Yongbyon and to protect South Korea from attack by missile or artillery," Mr. Woolsey wrote this week in the Wall Street Journal in an article co-written by retired U.S. Air Force Lieutenant-General Thomas McInerney. "We believe the use of air power in such a war would be swifter and more devastating than it was in Iraq," the article said. "We judge that the U.S. and South Korea could defeat North Korea decisively in 30 to 60 days with such a strategy." ...
They warned that a war could soon become necessary to prevent North Korea from selling weapons-grade plutonium to "rogue states" and terrorist organizations. "The world has weeks to months, at most, to deal with this issue, not months to years," Mr. Woolsey and Lt.-Gen. McInerney wrote. Similar warnings were issued recently by William Perry, the former U.S. defence secretary, who said North Korea and the United States were drifting toward war — perhaps as early as this year. ...

From VOA: 07 Aug 2003, 19:30 UTC
Powell Rules Out Non-Aggression Pact with N. Korea
David Gollust, State Department
Secretary of State Colin Powell Thursday again ruled out a U.S. non-aggression pact with North Korea as part of a deal to end that country's nuclear program. But he said there could be less-formal security guarantees for Pyongyang, from the United States and other parties to upcoming six-way talks in Beijing. ...

From Seattle PI: Thursday, August 14, 2003
South Korean envoy urges action
Ambassador says that the North poses a deadly threat that can't be ignored
South Korea's ambassador to the United States, Han Sung Joo, told a Seattle audience yesterday that if problems posed by North Korea are ignored, it could lead to "an Armageddon." In a talk sponsored by the World Affairs Council, Han said that a nuclear-armed North Korea poses a much greater threat than Saddam Hussein's Iraq, and previewed the upcoming meeting with North Korea and representatives from five other countries in Beijing, scheduled to run from Aug. 27 to 29. ...

From The NYT: August 18, 2003
U.S. to Send Signal to North Koreans in Naval Exercise
WASHINGTON, Monday, Aug. 18 — The Bush administration, while preparing for talks soon with North Korea, is also stepping up military pressure with plans for a joint naval exercise next month to train for interdicting at sea arms and other materials being transported to and from the North. Administration officials and Asian diplomats said that the exercise would be carried out in the Coral Sea off northeastern Australia in September and that it was officially described as directed at no one country. A principal intention, however, was to send a sharp signal to North Korea to dismantle its nuclear weapons program, they said.
The next round of talks with North Korea is planned for Aug. 27 in Beijing, with six nations taking part. The United States has been working with its allies to decide which items to present, from economic benefits to security guarantees, that would be provided if the North Korean government agreed to shut down its program verifiably and irreversibly. North Korea said today that unless the United States changed its policy toward it, the North would use the talks to declare that it could not dismantle its nuclear weapons program. The official North Korean news agency said such a change in American policy must include the signing of a nonaggression pact, the establishment of formal diplomatic relations and a guarantee that the United States would not interfere in North Korea's foreign trade. ...
The exercises are part of a program announced by President Bush and leaders of other countries at a meeting in Krakow, Poland, at the end of May known as the Proliferation Security Initiative, with 11 nations participating: the United States, Britain, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal and Spain. The Coral Sea naval exercise is to be the Initiative's first such action, and its participants set plans for it in July at a meeting in Brisbane, Australia. Under a separate program, known as the D.P.R.K. Illicit Activities Initiative, referring to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, North Korea's official name, there has been a quiet crackdown by many nations against the North's narcotics trade, counterfeiting, money laundering and other efforts to earn hard currency. ...

From Donga (BBC, E. Asia): AUGUST 25, 2003 21:39
Changing Regime Is Only Way To Resolve Nuclear Crisis
by Seung-Ryun Kim
“In order to resolve North Korean Issue, China should exercise its influence on North Korea to change the regime. It, however, wouldn`t be easy for China to take a dominant role in changing the regime and when it occurs, attacks on the North may become unavoidable,” former CIA Director James Woolsey insisted yesterday. Woolsey, who visited Seoul as CIA director during the North Korean Nuclear crisis in 1994 and is revisiting Seoul to participate the General Meeting of Pacific Basin Economic Council (PBEC), expressed his hard-line stance at a press conference yesterday at Silla Hotel. The followings are details of the interview. ...
“If South Korea and the United States do not want to take a military solution, the only way to stop the nuclear weapons development of the North is changing the North Korean regime using the China`s influence. ... If China does not participate in changing the regime change, it is evading its responsibility as a leader of Northeast Asia.” ... "

From AP: Tuesday, August 26, 2003 9:42 p.m. ET
Powell Defends Aide's N. Korea Criticism
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Secretary of State Colin Powell defended a controversial speech by his top nonproliferation aide in which he launched a series of personal attacks on North Korean leader Kim Jong Il. Powell, in a Tuesday letter to Sen. John Kyl, R-Ariz., said the speech by Undersecretary of State John Bolton was fully cleared by the State Department and was consistent with administration policy. The letter, Powell wrote, "did not really break new ground with regard to our disdain for the North Korean leadership and, as such, was official." The State Department made the letter public Tuesday night. In his speech, given four weeks ago in South Korea , Bolton said of Kim, "To give in to his extortionist demands would only encourage him and, perhaps more ominously, other would-be tyrants around the world." The speech included more than 40 personal attacks on Kim. ...

From Reuters at MSNBC:
U.S. rules out formal N. Korea talks
No progress reported at bilateral meeting on nuclear crisis
BEIJING, Aug. 28 — The United States said on Thursday it would not hold the formal bilateral meetings that Pyongyang wants during six-nation talks in China aimed at ending the North Korean nuclear crisis. ...
In a sign of the difficulties ahead, the United States had already rejected North Korea’s demand the two sign a non-aggression treaty, a Japanese press report said. ...

From AP at Tampa Bay Online: Aug 28, 5:49 PM EDT
N. Korea Vows Test to Prove It Has Nukes
By GEORGE GEDDA. Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Rejecting U.S. disarmament demands, North Korea said Thursday it will prove to the world that it possesses nuclear weapons by carrying out a nuclear test, a U.S. government official said. ...
But the North Korean rejection of the U.S. nuclear disarmament proposal appeared to be complete. According to the official, Kim said there was no evidence of any U.S. intention to abandon its policy of hostility toward North Korea. He also rejected U.S. suggestions that North Korea open up its nuclear facilities to international inspection. ...

From The NYT: August 30, 2003
North Korea Says It Is Against More Talks By JOSEPH KAHN
BEIJING, Aug. 30 - North Korea declared today that it sees no need to continue nuclear talks with the six nations it met in Beijing last week and has no choice but to strengthen its nuclear deterrent, sharply contradicting an agreement announced by China and potentially escalating the nuclear crisis. A North Korean foreign ministry spokesman quoted by the official KCNA news agency in Pyongyang dismissed the just-concluded six-party negotiations in Beijing as a trick designed to disarm the North. The spokesman said such negotiations were of no use to the Communist state. "The talks have made us believe that we have no other choice but to strengthen our nuclear deterrent force as a self-defensive means," the spokesman was quoted as saying. "We are not interested at all in this kind of talks and do not have any hopes," for continuing the negotiations, he said. ...
Bush administration officials said that if North Korea were to stage a nuclear test, the United States would move quickly to impose international sanctions and would begin interdicting North Korean ships at sea, among other measures. ...

From Reuters: Sat August 30, 2003 07:20 AM ET
N.Korea Against More Talks, Wants More Atomic Arms By Martin Nesirky
SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea said on Saturday the hardline U.S. stance at the Beijing nuclear negotiations meant there was no point in holding further talks and left it with no choice but to enhance its nuclear deterrent force. ... China, which used unprecedented diplomatic leverage to arrange the meeting, said it hoped the talks aimed at defusing the nuclear crisis would continue, as agreed on Friday. It also repeated its opposition to nuclear weapons on the divided Korean peninsula, but stopped short of condemning the North's comments. "We hope all parties will continue to make efforts and continue the process of dialogue," the Chinese Foreign Ministry said in a statement. But the North Korean spokesman said the Beijing talks -- also attended by China, Japan, Russia and South Korea -- were a trick aimed at disarming the isolated communist state. The U.S. delegation had hardened its stance by saying it would negotiate fully with North Korea only once the North had scrapped its nuclear development program, he said. ...

From USA Today: 09/02/03
Carter: U.S.-North Korea war seems 'strong possibility'
By Jimmy Carter
We face the strong possibility of another Korean war, with potentially devastating consequences, so the endangered multilateral talks in Beijing are of paramount importance. It is vital that some accommodation be reached between Pyongyang and Washington. ...
There was another crisis in 1994 ... A satisfactory agreement was concluded and later confirmed by both governments, with participation by South Korea, Japan and others. But neither side honored all the commitments.
The situation is rapidly deteriorating again. North Korea feels increasingly threatened by being branded an ''axis of evil'' member; deployment of anti-ballistic missiles in Alaska; Washington voices expressing military threats; interception of North Korean ships; ad hominem attacks on President Kim Jong Il; condemnation of previous efforts by President Clinton and South Korean leaders to resolve issues peacefully; and U.S. refusal to negotiate directly with North Korea. America's newly declared policies of pre-emptive war and first use of nuclear weapons also concern North Koreans.
Even before these more recent threats, the North Koreans began a secret and illicit nuclear program. They have initiated a concerted effort to develop a nuclear arsenal, with the possible production of a half-dozen weapons by the end of 2003 and similar annual numbers thereafter. These could be used by North Korea or sold to other nations or terrorist groups. This is now by far the most serious threat to regional and world peace.
There are other issues, but the basic North Korean demand is a firm non-aggression commitment from the United States, which U.S. officials continue to reject. The U.S. insists first on a complete end to the North Koreans' nuclear program, which they have refused to accept. If neither side will yield or compromise, then an eventual military confrontation seems likely. The United States can prevail, but with terrible human casualties in both North and South Korea.
There must be verifiable assurances that prevent North Korea from becoming a threatening nuclear power, with a firm commitment that the U.S. will not attack a peaceful North Korea. This is a time for sustained and flexible diplomacy between our two governments, to give peace and economic progress a chance within a nuclear-free Korean peninsula.

From The Sydney Morning Herald: September 10, 2003
Strategy on Pyongyang is wrong, Bush told
By Marian Wilkinson, Herald Correspondent in Washington
A former key US State Department official involved in North Korean nuclear talks has attacked the Bush Administration, saying that unless its approach to negotiations is rethought, any prospect of success is "very grim". Charles (Jack) Pritchard, the former special envoy for negotiations with North Korea, who resigned from the State Department last month, said the US must drop its opposition to one-on-one talks with North Korea and begin a "serious and sustained dialogue" to try to defuse the crisis. ...

From Reuters: Wed September 10, 2003 05:49 PM ET
N. Korea Has New, Accurate Missile-U.S. Officials
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - North Korea has used Russian technology to develop a new, intermediate-range missile that may be the most capable and accurate system in Pyongyang's arsenal, U.S. officials said on Wednesday. There also are "indications" the North Koreans have begun limited production of the longer-range Taepo Dong 2 missile that can reach the continental United States and may be ready for export, a senior official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters. ...

From AP: Thu Sep 11, 5:31 PM ET
Officials: NKorea Missile May Target U.S.
By GEORGE GEDDA, Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON - The Bush administration has received information that North Korea is developing a long-range ballistic missile designed to reach targets throughout the United States, two government officials said Thursday. The officials, asking not to be identified, said the potential reach of the missile is 9,400 miles, a distance within the range of any U.S. state or territory. Until now, the limit of North Korea's missile range was thought by U.S. defense experts to have been Alaska or Hawaii for relatively lighter payloads and the western half of the continental United States for heavier payloads.
The updated model is based on Russia's SSN6, a Soviet-era, submarine-launched ballistic missile. This suggests cooperation, at a minimum, from Russian scientists or other entities, the officials said. ...

From AFP at SpaceWar: Sep 13, 2003
Russia denies helping N.Korea to develop long-range missile
MOSCOW (AFP) - Russia is not helping North Korea to develop long-range ballistic missiles capable of striking the United States, Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said late Friday. ... "The appearance of such disinformation is not contributing to the goals of ensuring peace, stability and safety on the Korean peninsula," Ivanov said. ...

From the Associated Press: Saturday, Sep. 13, 2003 POSTED AT 4:07 AM EDT
N. Korea vows to strengthen nuclear prowess

From The Independent: 15 September 2003
Japan warns that it will attack if North Korea aims missile
By David McNeill in Tokyo
Japan's Defence Minister has stressed his country's right to strike North Korean missile sites if an attack is thought imminent. ... A number of senior politicians have recently floated the idea of Japan developing its own nuclear weapons ... The Prime Minister, Junichiro Koizumi said yesterday that he wanted permanent changes to Article 9 - the section that renounces Japan's right to wage war ...

From The Japan Times: Friday, September 19, 2003
Panel calls for reinterpretation of the antiwar Constitution
In light of the nuclear threat posed by North Korea, the government should alter its interpretation of the Constitution and allow Japan to exercise the right of collective defense, according to a report compiled Thursday by an advisory panel to Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi. "The government's interpretation of the Constitution, barring the country from exercising the right of collective defense, is an obstacle," the report says. ... Touching on Japan's vow that it will "not produce, not possess and not allow nuclear weapons into the country," the report claims that the third principle is effectively violated by the port calls of U.S. ships carrying nuclear arms. ...

From AP: Thu Sep 18, 6:12 AM ET
U.S. Displays Air Defense in S. Korea By SOO-JEONG LEE, Associated Press Writer
SUWON AIR BASE, South Korea - The U.S. military displayed its newest missile defense system on Thursday about 50 miles south of the border with North Korea, amid growing concerns over the communist state's missile development. The enhanced interceptor missiles, called the Patriot Advanced Capability-3, are the first to be fielded permanently outside the United States. A PAC-3 launcher can accommodate up to 16 missiles that intercept and destroy incoming ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and enemy aircraft. The U.S. military used the PAC-3 missiles during the war with Iraq. ... There are four PAC-2 and four PAC-3 batteries in South Korea. A PAC-2 launcher can carry only four missiles. ...

From AFP: Tue Sep 23,10:45 AM ET
New US unmanned spy planes deployed against North Korea
SEOUL (AFP) - US military authorities said they had deployed new unmanned spy planes in South Korea as part of a 11-billion-dollar defense build-up plan against North Korea. The 8th US army said in a statement it would test-fly its new "Shadow-200" unmanned surveillance planes from a military base near the border Friday. It said the system was to "contribute to the overall deterrence US forces brings to the alliance" with South Korea by offering "real time, accurate and relevant intelligence of the battle field." ...

From AP: Tue Sep 23, 9:54 PM ET
Rumsfeld: N. Koreans to Abandon Communism By ROBERT BURNS, AP Military Writer
WASHINGTON - Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld predicted on Tuesday that the people of North Korea will cast aside the communist dictatorship that has ruled the country for more than half a century. "While the situation in North Korea sometimes looks bleak, I'm convinced that one day freedom will come to the people of the North and light up that oppressed land with hope and with promise," he said in a speech to the U.S.-Korea Business Council, a private group that promotes trade ties. ...

From The NYT: November 5, 2003
U.S. Persuades Allies to Halt North Korean Atom Project By DAVID E. SANGER
WASHINGTON, Nov. 4 — The Bush administration persuaded its Asian and European allies on Tuesday to suspend a multibillion-dollar project to build two nuclear power reactors in North Korea, in what appeared to be the last step in the dissolution of the 1994 accord that temporarily froze North Korea's nuclear weapons program. ...

From AFP at SpaceWar: Nov 06, 2003
US warns North Korea on power plant threat
WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States warned North Korea on Thursday not to seize the assets of an international consortium if it suspends a plan to build a nuclear power plant on its soil. A North Korean foreign ministry spokesman earlier said the consortium, led by the United States, European Union, South Korea and Japan, could be prevented from taking equipment, documents and other items out of the Stalinist state. ...

From Reuters: Thu November 6, 2003 02:15 PM ET
N.Korea Envoy Says Nuclear Deterrent Ready to Use By Katherine Baldwin

From The Korea Times: 11-14-2003 19:06
NK Willing to Attend Nuke Talks
MOSCOW (Yonhap) _ North Korea affirmed again its intention to participate in a new round of six-way talks on resolving concerns over Pyongyang's nuclear weapons plan, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Thursday. ``North Korean Ambassador to Russia Pak Ui-chun and Vice Russian Foreign Minister Alexander Losyukov said in Moscow that their countries are ready for a new round of six-way talks to seek a fair and reciprocal resolution to the nuclear issue,’’ a spokesman for the ministry said. In a significant turnaround from its earlier position, North Korea agreed in principle to a second round of six-way talks during a meeting with a delegation from China in late October. ...

From AFP at SpaceDaily: Nov 14, 2003
CIA sounds new warning on North Korea missile that could hit US
WASHINGTON (AFP) - The CIA is sounding a new alarm that North Korea may be ready to flight test a nuclear capable multi-stage missile capable of reaching parts of the United States. ... In an adapted three-stage configuration, the Taepo Dong-2 could in theory ferry a warhead to anywhere in North America. North Korea has said it will stick to its missile moratorium until the end of this year, but yet to commit to extending it into next year. ...

From The BBC: Tuesday, 18 November, 2003, 11:27 GMT
Rumsfeld brands N Korea 'evil'

At Asia Times: Nov 26, 2003
Bush's North Korea policy still a shambles By Aidan Foster-Carter

From AP at The Strait Times: Dec 1, 1.15 pm (Singapore time)
Pyongyang rejects US demand to renounce nukes
NORTH Korea on Monday rejected a key US demand that it first renounce its nuclear programmes before winning any security guarantees from Washington, saying that such conditions amounted to 'slavery' and that the country would 'rather die' first. 'The US demand that the DPRK drop 'the nuclear programme first' means that the DPRK should lay down arms and work for the US as a servant. The DPRK can never accept it. It would rather die than having peace in exchange for slavery,' Pyongyang said in a commentary carried by the official news agency, KCNA. ...

From AFP at SpaceWar: Dec 03, 2003
North Korea crisis talks may not take place in December: US official
WASHINGTON (AFP) Six-nation talks on the North Korea nuclear crisis may not take place before the end of the year as hoped and may be pushed back into January or February, a US official warned Tuesday. ...

From AP at Yahoo: Tue Dec 9, 7:16 AM ET
N. Korea Sets Condition for Halting Nukes By SANG-HUN CHOE, Associated Press Writer
SEOUL, South Korea - North Korea said Tuesday it will freeze its nuclear weapons program if Washington takes the communist country off its list of terrorism-sponsoring nations and provides fuel aid. If this demand is met by the United States, North Korea also said it will join a second round of six-nation talks aimed at persuading Pyongyang to dismantle its nuclear weapons programs. North Korea would "freeze" its nuclear activities in exchange for "measures such as the U.S. delisting the DPRK as a 'terrorism sponsor,' lift of the political, economic and military sanctions and blockade and energy aid including the supply of heavy fuel oil and electricity by the U.S. and neighboring countries," a spokesman for North Korea's Foreign Ministry was quoted as saying by its official news agency, KCNA. ... "This would lay a foundation for furthering the six-way talks," the spokesman said. "What is clear is that in no case the DPRK would freeze its nuclear activities unless it is rewarded." ...

From AP at My Way News: Dec 9, 4:34 PM (ET)
U.S. Rejects New N. Korea Offer on Nukes By SOO-JEONG LEE
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) - North Korea announced Tuesday it would freeze its nuclear weapons projects in return for the United States providing energy aid and removing Pyongyang from a list of countries that sponsor terrorism. President Bush rejected the offer. ... "The goal of the United States is not for a freeze of the nuclear program," Bush said at a White House news conference with Premier Wen Jiabao of China, which is spearheading the drive to resume talks with North Korea. "The goal is to dismantle a nuclear weapons program in a verifiable and irreversible way," Bush said. "That is the clear message we are sending to the North Koreans." ... Under its initial proposal, North Korea would declare its willingness to give up nuclear development, allow nuclear inspections, give up missiles exports and finally dismantle its nuclear weapons facilities. In return, it demanded economic and humanitarian aid, security assurances, diplomatic ties and new power plants. ...

From AFP at Yahoo: Dec. 11, 2003
WFP urges support for 6.5 million hungry in North Korea
BEIJING, (AFP) - The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) has appealed for the international community to commit itself to a new 171 million dollar emergency operation to feed 6.5 million starving people in North Korea. ...

From The Age: December 22, 2003
Bush, Hu talk after Cheney scuttles plan for N Korea By Hamish McDonald, China Correspondent
Beijing - US President George Bush talked with Chinese President Hu Jintao by telephone at the weekend after revelations that hardliners in Mr Bush's Administration had derailed diplomatic preparations for new talks with North Korea over its nuclear weapons. The chat came after US newspapers reported that US Vice-President Dick Cheney, a neo-conservative wielding unusual powers in foreign policy, opposed the latest draft of a Chinese-initiated plan for North Korea to freeze and dismantle its nuclear programs in return for security guarantees and economic aid. US State Department negotiators had submitted a reworked version of the Chinese plan to a high-level meeting in Washington on December 12, but Mr Cheney had insisted that the document required North Korea to agree to "irreversible" dismantling of its nuclear weapons programs and international verification. The Knight-Ridder newspaper chain said a senior official had quoted Mr Cheney as telling the meeting: "I have been charged by the President with making sure that none of the tyrannies in the world are negotiated with. We don't negotiate with evil; we defeat it." The re-emergence of the word "evil" and talk of defeat - recalling Mr Bush's January 2002 speech linking North Korea with Iraq and Iran in an "axis of evil" - is likely to make the North Koreans even more distrustful of promising anything ahead of hard guarantees from the US and its allies. ...
On Saturday, Pyongyang's main official newspaper, Rodong Sinmun, said North Korea would never give up its "nuclear deterrent" unless its security was guaranteed and aid recommenced. ...

From Reuters: Thursday, December 25, 2003 12:11 a.m. ET
U.S. Says It Will Give North Korea Additional Food Aid By Mark Felsenthal
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States will give additional food aid to North Korea after U.N. officials reported fewer obstacles to tracking distribution, the State Department said on Wednesday. The United States will donate an additional 60,000 metric tons of agricultural commodities to North Korea through the U.N. World Food Program, State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said in a statement. The promise of more aid comes as Chinese and U.S. officials met earlier this week in Beijing to discuss how to move forward on six-way negotiations to curtail North Korea's nuclear arms program. The aid is not linked to the talks, State Department spokeswoman Brenda Greenberg said. ...
The additional contribution brings total U.S. food aid to North Korea this year to 100,000 tons. Secretary of State Colin Powell said in February the United States would give North Korea food aid this year, but cut the amount to between 40,000 and 100,000 tons and tied the final amount in part to allowing donors to track distribution. Powell said the amount was lower than last year's 157,000 tons because the World Food Program had asked for less aid and because other nations were expected to boost their donations.

From AFP at Yahoo: Wed Dec 31, 2003 12:49 AM ET
North Korea accuses US of aerial espionage in preparation for war
SEOUL, (AFP) - North Korea has accused the United States of conducting more than 180 aerial spying missions this month in preparation for a "surprise attack" on the communist country. ...


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