WASHINGTON (AP) -- The top U.S. negotiator in international disarmament talks with North Korea is heading to Asia to prepare for a round of negotiations next week.
State Department officials said Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill was leaving for Tokyo and Singapore Monday ahead of six-nation talks in Beijing on Dec. 8.
Hill was expected to meet with North Korean officials before the Beijing negotiations. The U.S. wants North Korea to settle on a process for verifying its atomic activities.
Pyongyang agreed last year to disable its nuclear reactor under a disarmament-for-aid pact. It recently denied having agreed to allow inspectors to take samples from its nuclear complex to verify past nuclear activities.
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