North Korea has declared it does not intend to produce nuclear weapons. Seoul reports that this statement was made on Wednesday by the North Korean delegation during intergovernmental talks held between the two Koreas.
A South Korean representative at the talks told journalists during a break that Seoul demanded that the North Korean delegation take measures which will deserve trust on the part of the international community in the nuclear sphere. North Korea replied it was not going to create an atomic bomb and explained the causes for the country's withdrawal from the non-proliferation treaty.
Pyongyang took off its obligations under this treaty and accused the USA of non-fulfilment of an agreement on building a new atomic power plant in North Korea by 2003 in exchange for the freezing of its nuclear programme.
South Korean News Agency Yonhap reports that Seoul assessed the statement of the North Korean delegation concerning the nuclear problem as a basis for discussing this issue at the talks. On the whole, the talks are devoted to economic cooperation between the two Korean states, but Seoul also decided to raise questions connected with the resumption of the North Korean nuclear programme.
The current, ninth, round of talks between the South and the North at the level of ministers will last till January 24th.
Simultaneously, inter-Korean talks on uniting the railways of the South and the North are being held in Pyongyang, and a meeting is being conducted in North Korean resort mountains between the Red Cross societies of the two sides to organize a meeting between the relatives disunited as a result of the national split.
The remarks from the Pope came as "a very strong step towards degradation," "given the rather massive nature of homosexuality" among the Catholic clergy.