US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is testifying Wednesday before a House Appropriations panel in Capitol Hill. Photo: Xinhua
North Korea and the US announced yesterday that the third round of their bilateral high-level dialogue had ended in a positive result. North Korea will temporarily stop activities involving nuclear tests, launches of long-range missiles and uranium enrichment as well as accept IAEA inspections. In return, the US will increase its food aid to North Korea.
We welcome this result which removes a major obstacle to the resumption of the Six-Party Talks.
The breakthrough this time obviously came thanks to talks between the US and North Korea last week in Beijing. As the country that has the most influence on North Korea, China also played its role in this negotiation.
The Six-Party Talks have ceased for over three years. During this period, several crises have shaken the Korean peninsula. These crises show that Northeast Asia is safer with the Six-Party Talks in place.
The achievement of the negotiations is very specific. In the future, it may be regarded as a mere detail of Northeast Asia politics. We welcome such details. But evidently, Northeast Asia needs a bigger strategic breakthrough, namely a shift away from the Cold War mentality.
In this mentality, North and South Korea regard each other as enemies, without any mutual strategic trust. The US and Japan also depict North Korea as monstrous and evil.
Truly evil countries are unlikely to exist in today's world. The world should look at North Korea with understanding and maintain normal contact with it.
North Korea is not strong enough to threaten the US, Japan and South Korea. Its fear of the outside world is much stronger than the reverse. The aforementioned three countries should seriously help to quell North Korean fears rather than increasingly intimidate it.
The world should help North Korea build confidence in peace and reduce its feeling of being threatened. The US, Japan and South Korea should not be hostile toward the current government in North Korea. This is the one important link in easing tension on the Korean peninsula.
Big breakthroughs need the accumulation of smaller ones. We hope this time the result of the North Korea-US negotiation will be fully implemented, without being interrupted by other minor issues. We all know that there are many factors that can easily derail this fragile achievement.
The US has taken up a position of absolute power in negotiations with North Korea. Washington and Seoul together have an even bigger advantage. The stronger side has more room to maneuver and make concessions.
We hope North Korea values this opportunity. The easing of tensions on the Korean Peninsula will benefit North Korea, which has the most stress to bear under the status quo. We sincerely wish to see a fundamental change in the external environment of North Korea. China will try to facilitate these changes, but the most important leverage is held by North Korea itself.
Global Times Report
N.Korea halts nuke activities
The US said Wednesday North Korea had agreed to a moratorium on nuclear tests and long-range missile launches and to allow nuclear inspectors to visit its Yongbyon nuclear complex in return for food aid.
China firm on NK defectors
China Wednesday reiterated its stance on North Korean nationals entering the country illegally and urged relevant parties not to politicize the issue.