World leaders mull N Korea at Apec

The Asia Pacific summit held with North Korea at the top of the agenda.

    Bush and Roh hold talks on North Korea
    Separately, Abe - attending his first major international summit - met Hu where North Korea was also the dominant topic.
    Nuclear programme
    The United States, China, Japan, Russia and South Korea are involved in six-party disarmament talks with Pyongyang, aimed at convincing Norht Korea's governement to abandon its nuclear programme.
    Apec leaders were unlikely to release a separate statement on North Korea at their get-together, but one US official said they might recycle the wording of the UN Security Council resolution in a final joint communique.
    Amid the diplomatic activity focused on North Korea, senior Apec delegates were putting the finishing touches on a stand-alone declaration, urging the WTO's 149 members to resume the Doha round of talks that broke down in July.
    A draft summit statement said the leaders would declare their readiness to "break the current deadlock" and urge other blocs to follow suit.
    Bush is also expected to push the idea of a cross-Pacific free trade zone stretching from China to Chile, seen by some as a "plan B", should WTO talks collapse, and by critics as an obstacle to Apec's own long-term trade goals.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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