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Clinton won't visit North Korea this month

November 5, 2000
Web posted at: 2:57 AM HKT (1857 GMT)

CHAPPAQUA, New York -- U.S. President Bill Clinton will not travel to North Korea at the conclusion of his upcoming trip to Vietnam later this month, a White House official said on Saturday.

"The president has not made a decision on whether he will go to Korea before the end of his term. He will, however, not go to Pyongyang at the end of his upcoming trip to Brunei and Vietnam," White House spokesman Jake Siewert said.

Missile talks in Kuala Lumpur helped expand areas of common ground but issues still remained to be resolved, he said.

A Clinton visit to North Korea, founded under a communist government following World War II, became a possibility after Secretary of State Madeleine Albright travelled to Pyongyang last month to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-il.

The two countries, on opposite sides in the 1950-1953 Korean War, had no regular contacts until a crisis over North Korea's nuclear programme led to a 1994 accord in which the nation agreed to halt the development of nuclear weapons.

CNN White House Correspondent Kelly Wallace and Reuters contributed to this report.

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