Bilateral talks between the US and North Korea to jump-start the stalled negotiations over dismantling Pyongyang's nuclear programmes resumed in Geneva Thursday. ( dpa )
US negotiator Christopher Hill told reporters as the talks got under way with his North Korean counterpart Kim Kye Gwan that he hoped for a "thorough discussion" adding: "I think it's pretty critical to get moving on this now."
The US claims Pyongyang had missed the agreed deadline of December 2007 to make a full declaration of its nuclear activities and disable its plutonium plant at Yongbyon, 60 miles north of Pyongyang. He said the process was now lagging ten weeks behind schedule.
"The declaration has to be a complete and correct declaration if we are going to get onto the next phase," he said.
Last year North Korea agreed a breakthrough deal in six-party talks involving its South Korean neighbour, China, Russia, Japan and the US, to shelve its nuclear weapons in exchange for badly needed energy and a package of security and diplomatic benefits. Pyongyang claims in turn it has not received everything promised. The talks are set to continue Friday.