Monday, November 20, 2006

U.S. to declare end to Korean War if N. Korea abandons nukes: report .... Yippie Time For A Parade

(Kyodo) _ U.S. President George W. Bush has told Chinese President Hu Jintao that Washington would officially declare an end to the Korea War if North Korea abandons it nuclear arms and programs, the Asahi Shimbun reported on its website Tuesday.

Bush made the remark during talks with the Chinese leader held on Sunday on the sidelines of an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum summit in Hanoi, the report said.

According to White House spokesman Tony Snow, Hu responded favorably to the U.S. proposal, according to the report.

The U.S. president made a similar offer when he met with South Korean President Roh Moo Hyun, it said.

After meeting Roh, Bush said, "We want the North Korean leaders to hear that if it gives up its weapons, nuclear weapons ambitions, we would be willing to enter into security arrangements with the North Koreans, as well as move forward new economic incentives for the North Korean people."

The 1950-1953 Korean War ended in a cease-fire, not a formal peace treaty.

The proposed end to the war is seen as a step toward concluding a peace treaty as repeatedly demanded by Pyongyang.

Washington apparently made the offer in a bid to induce a shift in North Korea's stance on the nuclear issue while maintaining its sanctions against the North, the report said.

A joint statement adopted at the end of the fourth round of the six-party talks on the North's nuclear program in September last year said the United States and North Korea respect each other's sovereignty and take steps to normalize their ties.

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