Canada applies diplomatic pressure on N. Korea

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November 18, 2006 by Joseph Krohn

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has sent Canada’s ambassador to South Korea to Pyongyang to help put pressure on North Korea to back down from its nuclear weapons program. The move came Saturday as Harper and other leaders attended the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting in Hanoi.

The media learned of the mission assigned to Marius Grinius from a briefing by South Korean officials after Harper met with their president, Roh Moo-hyun, earlier Saturday. Grinius is “now in North Korea and plans to deliver a strong message for the resolution of the nuclear issue,” Roh’s office said in a statement.

“The message he is delivering is frank and clear: give up the nuclear missile tests and return to the six-party talks,” an unidentified Canadian official told Reuters. Ottawa is urging Pyongyang to abide by a 2005 UN resolution to abandon its nuclear program in exchange for security and aid.

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