Sunday, July 20, 2003

perhaps we have found the one? 

Joe Biden for president:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A top Senate Democrat said on Sunday that the Bush administration did not have a coherent policy on North Korea (news - web sites) amid reports that the Asian nation might have built a second secret facility for producing weapons-grade plutonium.

"There is no policy," said Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, on NBC's "Meet the Press."

"I am at a loss to understand why this administration insists that we have the situation in North Korea under control," Biden added.

North Korea has told Washington that it has reprocessed 8,000 spent nuclear fuel rods, enough to produce about a half dozen nuclear weapons. In addition, U.S. officials confirmed late Saturday a New York Times report that Pyongyang may have built a second, secret facility to produce weapons-grade plutonium.

Asked if the United States should launch a pre-emptive strike in North Korea as it did in Iraq (news - web sites), Biden said, "We launch a pre-emptive diplomatic effort now, which we have not done."

He said a multilateral approach, which President Bush (news - web sites) has called for, is desirable but Washington should hold direct talks with the North.

"We (should) sit down and talk and privately, unabashedly, lay out to them what it's going to require for them to be brought into the international community, and what's going to happen if, in fact, they do not cease and desist," he said.
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