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China says envoy won North Korea backing to defuse tensions

BEIJING (Reuters) - China on Tuesday said its envoy to North Korea had recently gained the country’s backing for easing regional tensions, convening regional talks and advancing “denuclearization” of the Korean peninsula.

Chinese spokeswoman Jiang Yu said that Beijing’s envoy to North Korea, Dai Bingguo, reached accord with Pyongyang on those points during his recent visit there.

“Both sides agreed that all sides should exercise calm and restraint and maintain a responsible attitude to prevent tensions from escalating, playing a positive role in preserving the peace and stability of the (Korean) peninsula,” Jiang said of Dai’s visit earlier this month, when he met the North’s reclusive leader, Kim Jong-il.

“Both sides believe the six-party talks process should go forward, and strive to achieve denuclearization of the (Korean) peninsula,” Jiang said of Dai’s talks in North Korea.

Reporting by Chris Buckley; Editing by Ken Wills