Richardson Hails Warmer Signals From North Korea

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2009 6:52 PM CDT
New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, right, meets with North Korean Minister Kim Myong Gil at the Governor's Mansion in Santa Fe, N.M. on Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2009.   (AP Photo/Craig Fritz)
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(Newser) – The tentative thaw continues in North Korea relations. On the heels of Bill Clinton's trip, Bill Richardson hosted two high-ranking officials from the North today at the governor's mansion in New Mexico and declared that Pyongyang is sending a "positive vibration" about detente. “What I sense was, one, the temperature has really cooled down in the relationship,” Richardson told MSNBC. “I think the Clinton visit has helped a lot.”

Richardson said the diplomats suggested that the North is open to renewing direct talks with the US on its nuclear weapons, but Pyongyang does not want to return to the six-party roundtable that includes South Korea. "The North Koreans clearly feel they are owed something, that they released the two Americans that they want something in return," said Richardson, who has visited the country in the past as an informal envoy.