A second group of US officials and nuclear experts is expected to arrive in North Korea on Saturday to continue efforts to disable nuclear facilities, South Korea's Yonhap news agency reported.
In a six-party deal sealed earlier this month, North Korea committed to disclose and disable its nuclear program by the end of the year, in exchange for 950,000 metric tons of heavy fuel oil or its equivalent. The deal is part of broader agreements previously reached by South and North Korea, the US, China, Russia and Japan that eventually would dismantle the country's nuclear facilities in exchange for aid and diplomatic incentives.
The first team of US experts, headed by Sung Kim, the State Department official in charge of Korean affairs, is expected to leave the Communist state on Thursday following a three-day inspection of key nuclear facilities at Yongbyon, about 90 kilometers (56 miles) north of Pyongyang. N. Korea shut down the facilities, which include the country's only operational 5-megawatt nuclear reactor, a radiochemical lab and a nuclear fuel producing plant, earlier this year.
Meanwhile, US President George W. Bush said on Wednesday that North Korea must keep its commitments under the six-party deal, including a promise to stop proliferation of nuclear technology and weapons. „If not, there will be consequences for the North Koreans,” Bush said at a White House news conference. His comments followed recent allegations that Pyongyang supplied Syria with nuclear parts or technology. (Ria Novosti)