South Korea's chief delegate to six-party talks about North Korea's nuclear program will visit the U.S. early next month to discuss a possible resumption of the multilateral dialogue.
The visit has renewed focus on whether the stalled six-way talks involving the two Koreas, the U.S., China, Japan and Russia, can resume after being suspended in late 2008.
A Foreign Ministry official on Sunday said Seoul's chief delegate Cho Tae-yong plans to visit the U.S. soon, and talks are under way about a possible trip to Beijing as well.
The official said "in-depth" discussion is under way over the possible resumption of the talks, which Beijing is eager to restart.
But Seoul and Washington are less than keen to resume the six-party talks at this stage. A Foreign Ministry official said, "The channels of communication remain open" but stressed that Seoul remains resolute that they can resume only when North Korea takes concrete steps to live up to its past pledges.
Instead, he pointed out, North Korea seems poised to restart its nuclear power plant in Yongbyon, which is capable of producing plutonium to make nuclear weapons.