Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Richardson Has Productive Talks With North Koreans

From governor's office:

Governor Bill Richardson met today with a delegation of North Korean diplomats at the Governor's Mansion in Santa Fe.

The delegation, representing North Korea's Mission to the United Nations in New York, requested the meeting with Governor Richardson. Led by Minister Myong Gil Kim and Counselor Jong Ho Paek, the delegation met with Governor Richardson for three hours this morning. They will resume talks later today. The delegation will meet on Thursday with community and business leaders to discuss New Mexico renewable energy initiatives.

The governor says the talks have been productive.
I got a sense that temperatures have really cooled down since President Clinton's visit. The delegation indicated that North Korea is ready for a new dialogue with the United States regarding the nuclear issue. The question is whether to proceed with face-to-face bilateral talks, as the North Korea prefer, or to utilize the six-party framework that the United States has advocated. The North Koreans clearly want bilateral talks and not the six-party framework.

On Wednesday, the Governor also met with Lodi Gyari, Special Envoy of the Dalai Lama at their request. The two men had a private meeting and then Governor Richardson hosted a small luncheon in honor of the Special Envoy at the mansion, including Greg Kruglak, President of the Conservancy for Tibetan Art and Culture, Stuart Ashman, Secretary for the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs and Paljor Thondup, President of Project Tibet. Lodi Gyari is the special envoy of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Washington, DC and currently serves as the Tibetan's lead negotiator with the Chinese Government. Mr. Gyari formerly served as Senior Cabinet Minister for the Department of Information and International Relations.

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