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Six-Way Talks Called 'Polite And Civilized'

26 July 2005 (RFE/RL) -- Delegates meeting over North Korea's nuclear program say there's been a conciliatory tone to the talks that resumed in China today.

South Korean officials called today's negotiations aimed at ending the nuclear crisis "more polite and civilized than before."

And a spokesman for the Chinese delegation called the first day of talks "a sound foundation."

As the talks opened, U.S. envoy Christopher Hill reassured North Korea that the United States views the country as a sovereign country that it will not attack.

Kim Kye-Gwan, North Korea's top delegate to the talks, said the North is "fully ready and prepared" to work towards ridding the Korean Peninsula of nuclear weapons.

"We have to get rid of the threats of a nuclear war from all over the Korean Peninsula and this calls for a strategic decision and political will from the parties who are trying to achieve a nuclear-free peninsula," Kim said.

The six-party talks -- which also involve Russia and Japan -- are reconvening after a 13-month boycott by North Korea.