February 21, 2024

Russian Interest in Six Party Rejuvenation?

At the present moment, both North Korea and Russia are, understandably, focused primarily on domestic issues. North Korea has seen the death of Kim Jong-Il, and Kim Jong-Un is undoubtedly focused on consolidating his position and influence internally. In Russia, the President elect Vladimir Putin is currently riding out the negative press that accompanied the recent Duma elections, and is aiming to ensure a smooth return to the Presidency in March.

With that in mind, it was interesting to see a small news item this week which suggested that Russia hopes to reconvene the Six-Party Talks this summer and get negotiations going again. This might have been seen in some quarters merely as safe words from Sergei Lavrov on Japanese television while he conducts visits to a number of Asian-Pacific countries, but a further news story showed a meeting between U.S and Russian officials scheduled in Moscow this week, at which both sides’ representatives to the Six-Party Talks will be in attendance.