US Diplomat Says US Open To North Korea Diplomacy

Published February 1, 2012 4:36AM (EST)

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — A senior U.S. diplomat says the North Korean nuclear standoff can be settled only if Pyongyang improves ties with archrival South Korea and follows through on previous nuclear commitments.

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Kurt Campbell told reporters Wednesday that Washington is still waiting to see whether North Korea's new leader is prepared to take the necessary steps.

The comments were aimed at both Koreas. While Campbell says the United States is "open to diplomacy" with the North, he made clear that Seoul must be satisfied with North Korea's stance as diplomacy progresses.

North Korea has vowed not to deal with South Korea's current government. But it has also suggested it is open to dealing with the United States.

By Salon Staff

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