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North Korea ready to stop nuclear research
Russia welcomes Pyongyang’s readiness to stop its nuclear programme, Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said at a ceremony of awarding to him honorary doctorship of the Mongolian State University. Commenting on North Korea’s statement expressing readiness to mothball a reactor in Yongbyong, he said “this is a step forward that will give reasons to count on a constructive answer from the US”. Ivanov noted a positive response to Pyongyang’s statement from American Secretary of State Colin Powell. “This can become a good basis for the continuation of the negotiating process,” he said. “Ensuring a nuclear-free status of the Korean Peninsula and retention of it in the sphere of nuclear non-proliferation, ensuing security of all states located there, the development of peaceful cooperation in Northeast Asia meets the interests of Russia.” Ivanov added that the issue of nuclear non-proliferation on the peninsula “should be solved only by a peaceful, negotiating process”. “Such solution could allow forming in this subregion a system of relations of states that would strongly guarantee the stability and peaceful cooperation, including rapprochement of both parts of Korea,” he said.
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