A working group of U.S. experts arrived here Thursday for talks on disabling the nuclear facilities of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).
The eight-member team, led by Kim Sung, director of the U.S. State Department's Office of Korean Affairs, will map out a plan for future teams to begin disabling the Yongbyon nuclear reactor.
As a first step, the U.S. experts would stay in the DPRK for about a week before another team took over in a "baton pass," according to the State Department.
The DPRK agreed to disable all existing nuclear facilities and provide a declaration of all its nuclear programs by the end of this year, according to a joint document released on Oct. 3 when the second phase of the sixth round of six-party talks ended in Beijing.
The document said the disabling of the five megawatt Experimental Reactor, the Reprocessing Plant (Radiochemical Laboratory) and the Nuclear Fuel Rod Fabrication Facility in Yongbyon would be completed by Dec. 31.
The United States would lead the disablement and provide initial funding, according to the document.
The six parties — China, the DPRK, the United States, South Korea, Russia and Japan — signed a landmark agreement on Feb. 13 that required the DPRK to declare all nuclear programs and disable all existing nuclear facilities, while the other parties must provide a total of 1 million tons of heavy fuel oil or equivalent aid to the country.