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 You are in: Under Secretary for Political Affairs > Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs > Releases > Remarks > 2005 East Asian and Pacific Affairs Remarks, Testimony, and Speeches

Fourth Round of Six-Party Talks: Evening Transit St. Regis

Christopher R. Hill, Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs
Beijing, China
August 1, 2005

QUESTION: Has there been any progress made in the Six Party Talks today?

A/S HILL: Its been a long, long day. Theres been drafting sessions most of the day. I wish I could report more progress, but in fact its been a long day without a lot of progress to report. Well go back at it tomorrow morning and see if we can get more done. I dont see any breakthroughs on the immediate horizon. We continue to have rather major differences between North Korea on one hand, and the other five parties on the other, but I think everyone is committed to getting back there in the morning and seeing what we can do. So there are going to be days like this, where you just spend a lot of time ten, twelve hours and you look back and you wish you could report more progress, but well get back at it tomorrow and see how we do.

QUESTION: Mr. Hill, did the North Koreans agree that they would forego a civil nuclear program?

A/S HILL: I dont want to get into the specific elements except to say that we have a number of disagreements with the North Koreans, and which elements are at play, its really hard to say. There have been times when weve felt that some issues were resolved only to pop up again. So, again, I think its very difficult to talk about specific issues at this point.

QUESTION: Do you still have confidence to have real progress this time?

A/S HILL: Weve got a lot of energy. Were quite prepared to work on this as long as we can, as long as were continuing to make progress. But, itll ultimately not just depend on us. It also depends on the North Koreans to decide whether they really want this. So, well go at it tomorrow morning and see how we do, and then well assess at the end of the day and see where weve been.

QUESTION: Secretary Hill, is the United States prepared to participate in providing heavy fuel oil to North Korea?

A/S HILL: Again, I dont want to get into specific elements of the agreement. At this point were looking at a set of principles. One of the principles is on the subject of energy, but at this point I dont want to get into specifics like whos going to provide heavy fuel oil.

QUESTION: Are you going to have bilateral meetings with the North Koreans tomorrow?

A/S HILL: Theres nothing scheduled. We met with basically all the delegations today. I know that what is scheduled is a meeting of the six parties tomorrow morning a meeting of the heads of delegation plus five so basically pretty close to plenary sessions. I know that Ill be meeting with the Chinese hosts. I met with them a couple of times today and beyond that I dont have any other bilaterals scheduled, except that weve tended to stay in very, very close contact with our Japanese and Republic of Korea colleagues, and Im sure well be seeing a lot of them tomorrow.

QUESTION: Mr. Secretary, regarding the definition of denuclearization, did North Korea backpedal again?

A/S HILL: Im not sure about backpedaling, but let me just say the definition of denuclearization has not been a big issue. I know you raise it with me every time I walk through this hotel so you must know more about it than I do, but I can say that weve got a number of issues at play and weve just got to keep at it and see how we do tomorrow.

QUESTION: Did the Chinese present a third draft today?

A/S HILL: The Chinese presented a second draft late last night, and it was on the basis of this second draft that we worked today.

QUESTION: Did the changes in that second draft cause North Korea to be more difficult?

A/S HILL: I am not aware of any change in the second draft that would have caused the North Koreans to be "more difficult," except to say that Im sure there are a lot of elements in the second draft, as well as in the first draft, that theyre not entirely happy with.

QUESTION: Do you expect to see the word "normalization" in a final draft?

A/S HILL: I dont know. When I see a final draft and Id love to see a final draft but were not there yet with a final draft, Ill look for the word "normalization" and let you know.

QUESTION: Will there be a third draft tomorrow?

A/S HILL: Dont know. Well talk to the Chinese in the morning and see how they assess the results of the rather difficult drafting session, which went a long time and which involved a lot of disagreements and a lot of bracketed language.

QUESTION: How long do you think the Six-Party Talks will last?

A/S HILL: How long do the Six-Party Talks last? Well, I dont know, I just sent eight shirts out to be cleaned today. I dont know well stay here as long as we feel were making progress, and if were not making progress were not going to stay. So well see how it goes and Ill let you know.

QUESTION: Secretary Hill, can you confirm that the North Koreans hosted a dinner for the U.S. delegation?

A/S HILL: Weve had working dinners pretty much every night. We dont just work from 9 to 5, we keep at it at night and yes, we did have a working dinner with the North Korean delegation. Weve done that with all the other delegations and well probably continue to do that because we need to make use of all the time and not just during the day but also at night.

QUESTION: Will Mr. Zoellick take part in this negotiation process?

A/S HILL: No, Mr. Zoellick is here on another very important mission, which is to engage in this global dialogue with China. It really reflects the growing, important relationship the U.S. has with China, so thats what hes engaged on.

QUESTION: Mr. Ambassador, Im sorry, I couldnt hear you did you say there was a working dinner tonight with the North Koreans?

A/S HILL: No, no, theres no working dinner. Its eleven oclock and the only thing Im going to do is go to bed

QUESTION: But was there already

A/S HILL: No, no, no. There havent been any I have not had dinner tonight.

QUESTION: Can you confirm when you had a working dinner with them?

A/S HILL: I dont know, whats tonight, I forget? Monday? I think it was Saturday. But youd better check, all the days kind of merge in. Ive been we had meetings at the site until about nine oclock, and then I went to the Embassy and then Ive come here, and Id like to get some dinner, if thats possible.

QUESTION: Was it by North Korea?

A/S HILL: I dont know who it was hosted by. You can go check with someone. Weve had working dinners just about every night when were not just working. And tonight I didnt have dinner, but Ive been working. We have not had a night where weve had dinner and were not working. So I hope that covers the range of issues that youre interested in. Ok, thank you very much, Id like to go to my room and eat a banana.

QUESTION: What time will you leave tomorrow?

A/S HILL: I dont know, probably six oclock. Youve got to be here at six oclock. Well, just to be sure, 5:30.

Released on August 3, 2005

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