North Korean will "soon" submit nuclear disclosure, Rice says

Other News Materials 19 June 2008 05:52 (UTC +04:00)

North Korea will soon provide an accounting of all of its nuclear work as part of a six-nation disarmament agreement with the secretive country, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Wednesday.

The United States will respond by taking steps to remove North Korea from the State Department's list of state sponsors of terrorism and toward ending sanctions, Rice said, the dpa reported.

Washington will, however, carefully examine North Korea's nuclear declaration to assure that it is a complete account of all of Pyongyang's nuclear activities, Rice said.

"Obviously, we're not going to take the word of the North Koreans that what they say on the piece of paper is a full representation of what they have," Rice told an audience at the conservative Heritage Foundation think tank in Washington.

Under the February 2006 agreement North Korea agreed to dismantle its nuclear programme in return for aid and diplomatic recognition. North Korea missed a deadline at the end of 2007 to provide the declaration, leaving the six-nation negotiations to implement the agreement in limbo.

China has hosted the six-nation talks that also include Japan, Russia and South Korea. " North Korea will soon give its declaration of nuclear programmes to China," Rice said.

The Bush administration is eager to complete the deal with North Korea before President George W Bush leaves the White House in January.