South Korea's new nuclear envoy plans to visit his counterparts in stalled talks on North Korea's nuclear program, the country's foreign minister said Wednesday.
South Korea on Monday appointed a top disarmament official, Chun Young-woo, to represent the country in talks with China, Japan, North Korea, Russia and the United States on ending the North's nuclear program.
Chun replaced Song Min-soon, who became President Roh Moo-hyun's main security adviser. Song leaves for Washington on Thursday for a three-day visit that includes talks with his counterpart, White House National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley.
Foreign Minister Ban Ki-moon said Chun will visit other "related countries" after Song returns from the U.S. trip.
"In the course of those trips, I expect that a shape of the six-party talks will emerge," Ban told reporters at a regular news briefing, without elaborating.
The nuclear talks have been stalled since November due mainly to a dispute over U.S. sanctions against North Korea over alleged currency counterfeiting and money laundering, with the communist state ruling out fresh talks unless the sanctions are lifted, reports the AP.