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US warns North Korea over nuclear test

The United States has warned North Korea directly of international repercussions if it proceeds the test.

india Updated: Oct 05, 2006 10:55 IST

The United States has warned North Korea directly of international repercussions if it proceeds with a nuclear test, the US envoy to atomic talks with the Stalinist state said.

The North Koreans were contacted through their United Nations mission in New York, said Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill, the lead negotiator to the six party talks aimed at ending Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programme.

"Yesterday we sent the message directly to the DPRK (North Korea) through the New York channel on our view of what such a test would mean," Hill said.

It is believed to be the first direct contact between the two countries since North Korea announced on Tuesday that it was planning its first nuclear test explosion.

The threat by Pyongyang, which has openly declared it has nuclear bombs, drew international concerns and the prospect of additional sanctions against the Stalinist state.

Hill left the door open for direct negotiations to end the crisis. "We have spoken consistently that we will meet them bilaterally, but has to be in the context of the six-party talks," he said at the launching of the US-Korea Institute at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington.

Asked to explain what he meant by the US view that was conveyed to North Korea, Hill said a nuclear blast "would be a very highly provocative act, and the international community cannot be indifferent to that," Hill said.

"I am not prepared at this point to say what we are going to do but I am prepared to say we are not going to wait for a nuclear North Korea, we are not going to accept it," he said.