Russia’s role in the six-party negotiations

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The second nuclear crisis over North Korea’s nuclear issue erupted in the winter of 2002–2003. With the convening of the six-party talks in August 2003, an imminent military showdown of the U.S. and the DPRK was postponed, and Russia for the first time was allowed to participate in a multinational conference on North Korea’s nuclear issue. How then did Russia gain a seat at the six-party negotiating table? What are Russian contributions at the six-party talks? What are Russian views on the North Korean nuclear issue ? These are the main questions this paper will address. After three full sessions, the six-party talks are still in impasse. To date, Russia’s contributions in resolving the substantive issues have been most noticeable in the format and procedural matters of the six-party talks. Russia’s drawing the “red-line” and “saber-rattling” contributed to the convening of the six-party talks as well. Russia’s role in the six-party negotiations has been quite visible and positive, but failed to bring a breakthrough in the deadlocked U.S.-DPRK relations. For now, Russia is funneling its diplomatic efforts to create a favourable atmosphere for dialogue and compromises between the U.S. and the DPRK, and will continue to pursue the limited foreign policy objective in the foreseeable future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-140
Number of pages34
JournalPacific Focus
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • North Korea
  • Nuclear Crisis
  • Russia
  • Six-Party Talks


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