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China's Wen Jiabao to visit next week, Pyongyang says

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-10-04

North Korea's official news agency has said that the country will receive a visit from Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao next week, in a move that could help revive dormant talks on Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme.

REUTERS - China’s prime minister will visit North Korea early next week, a trip that could help revive stalled talks on ending Pyongyang’s nuclear ambitions.

 

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao “will pay an official goodwill visit” to North Korea from Oct. 4 to 6, the KCNA news agency said in a one sentence dispatch on Monday.

 

The South’s Yonhap news agency quoted diplomatic sources in Beijing as saying there could be an announcement during Wen’s visit about the dormant six-country talks over the North’s nuclear disarmament.

 

Earlier this month, North Korean leader Kim Jong-il told a visiting envoy from China, Pyongyang’s only major ally, that he will work to end his state’s nuclear arms programme through multilateral talks.

 

The North has made similar pledges before but never followed through on them.

 

Impoverished North Korea in recent months has reached out to the international community after being hit with U.N.  sanctions for a nuclear test in May that were aimed at cutting off a vital source of hard currency gained through its arms sales.

 

Sputtering talks among the two Koreas, China, Japan, Russia and the United States ground to a halt about a year ago, with Pyongyang saying it will boycott the sessions until Washington drops its hostile attitude.

 

 

Date created : 2009-09-28