US wants to resolve restrictions against N. Korea

The main U.S. envoy to South Korea said Washington will seek to resolve financial restrictions on North Korea that have hindered nuclear talks, after Pyongyang agreed to return to the negotiations following its nuclear test. "We want to resolve these issues because we do want to have a normal relationship with North Korea," U.S. Ambassador Alexander Vershbow said in a lecture to university students, referring to the standoff between Washington and Pyongyang over U.S. moves to cut off the communist nation's access to foreign banks for alleged illicit activities like counterfeiting and money laundering. Pyongyang has said it will seek to have the financial restrictions lifted at the resumed talks, last held in November 2005. They involve the two Koreas, China, Russia, Japan and the U.S.