N.Korea: We'll build up 'deterrents'

April 13, 2006 at 6:23 AM

TOKYO, April 13 (UPI) -- A senior North Korean official said Thursday the deadlocked six-party talks will give his nation a chance to "build up its deterrents."

"It is not a bad thing (for the resumption of the talks) to be delayed. During this period (North Korea) can build up its deterrents," Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan said at a Tokyo news conference, alluding to North Korea's intent to build more nuclear weapons, Kyodo News reported.

Kim repeatedly insisted that the United States must lift the freeze on North Korean funds in a Macao bank before six-party talks can resume.

The six-party talks, involving Japan, the United States, China, Russia and the two Koreas, broke off in November when North Korea left in protest of the bank freeze.

Washington says the sanctions are a law enforcement matter unrelated to the talks and has called for North Korea to return unconditionally to the negotiations about North Korea's use of nuclear power.

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