The pact was neither a treaty subject to Senate approval nor a legally binding execuritve agreement, which does not require Senate action, but a non-binding political commitment between the two countries noted by the United Nations Security Council It was signed in the wake of North Korea's 90-day advance notification of its intended withdrawal from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (which North Korea "suspended" after 89 days), a U.S. military buildup near the country, and U.S. plans to bomb the active Yongbyon nuclear reactor
Terms of the pact and consequent agreements included the shutdown of the pilot Yongbyon nuclear reactor, abandoning the construction of two larger nuclear power plants, and the canning and sealing, under IAEA monitoring, of spent fuel that could have been reprocessed to create plutonium for a nuclear weapon. In exchange two light water reactors would be constructed in North Korea by 2003 at a cost of $4 billion, primarily supplied by South Korea. In the interim, North Korea would be supplied with 500,000 tons of heavy fuel oil annually, at no cost, to make up for lost energy production. North Korea was required to come into full compliance with its IAEA safeguards agreement, allowing the IAEA to verify the correctness and completeness of its initial declaration, before key nuclear components of the reactor would be delivered. When the LWR plants were completed, North Korea would dismantle its other nuclear reactors and associated facilities.
The Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO) is a consortium of the United States, South Korea, Japan, and various other states that is responsible for implementing the energy-related parts of the agreement. North Korea would repay KEDO over a 20-year interest-free period after the completion of each LWR plant.
It was reported that US President Bill Clinton's officials agreed to the plan only because they thought that the North Korean government would collapse before the nuclear power project was completed as North Korea's leader Kim Il-sung had recently died. North Korean officials at the time also suspected the U.S. anticipated an early collapse of the DPRK
Soon after the agreement was signed, U.S. Congress control changed to the Republican Party, who did not support the agreement. Some Republican Senators were strongly against the agreement, regarding it as appeasement Initially U.S. Department of Defense emergency funds not under Congress control were used to fund the transitional oil supplies under the agreement , together with international funding. From 1996 Congress provided funding, though not always sufficient amounts Consequently some of the agreed transitional oil supplies were delivered late. KEDO's first director, Stephen Bosworth, later commented "The Agreed Framework was a political orphan within two weeks after its signature".
Some analysts believe North Korea agreed to the freeze primarily because of the U.S. agreement to phase out economic sanctions that had been in place since the Korean War. But because of congressional opposition, the U.S. failed to deliver on this part of the agreement.
International funding for the LWR replacement power plants had to be sought. Formal invitations to bid were not issued until 1998, by which time the delays were infuriating North Korea. In May 1998 North Korea warned it would restart nuclear research if the U.S. could not install the LWR. Formal ground breaking on the site was on August 21, 1997, but significant spending on the LWR project did not commence until 2000.
There was increasing disagreement between North Korea and U.S. on the scope and implementation of the treaty. When by 1999 economic sanctions had not been lifted and full diplomatic relations between U.S. and North Korea had not been established, North Korea warned that they would resume nuclear research unless the U.S. kept up its end of the bargain. The U.S. repeatedly stated that further implementation would be stalled as long as suspicions remained that the North Korean nuclear weapons research program continued covertly.
Construction of the first LWR reactor began in August 2002. Construction of both reactors was well behind schedule. The initial plan was for both reactors to be operational by 2003, but the construction had been halted indefinitely in late 2002.
The HEU intelligence that James Kelly’s accusation is based on is still controversial: According to the CIA fact sheet to Congress on November 19, 2002, there was “clear evidence indicating the North has begun constructing a centrifuge facility” and this plant could produce annually enough HEU for two or more nuclear weapons per year when it is finished. However, some experts assessed that the equipment North Korea imported was insufficient evidence of a production-scale enrichment program.
KEDO members considered in November 2002 whether to halt the fuel oil shipments in response to the previous month's developments. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State James A. Kelly warned Japanese officials that the U.S. Congress would not fund such shipments in the face of continued violations. The shipments were halted in December.
In December 2003, KEDO suspended work on the pressurized water reactor project. Subsequently KEDO shifted the focus of its efforts to ensuring that the LWR project assets at the construction site in North Korea and at manufacturers’ facilities around the world ($1.5 billion invested to date) are preserved and maintained.
On January 10, 2003, North Korea again announced its withdrawal from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. On February 10, 2005, North Korea finally declared that it had manufactured nuclear weapons as a "nuclear deterrent for self-defence" On October 9, 2006, North Korea conducted a nuclear test. US intelligence agencies believe that North Korea has manufactured a handful of simple nuclear weapons.
Each side blamed the other for ending the Agreed Framework. The United States pointed out that a North Korean uranium enrichment facility would violate the 1992 Joint Declaration on the Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula , which states "The South and the North shall not possess nuclear reprocessing and uranium enrichment facilities." North Korea accused the United States of a "hostile policy" including deliberately delaying fuel supplies and progress on the KEDO project that "effectively nullified" the agreement, listing North Korea as part of the "Axis of evil" and a target of the U.S. preemptive nuclear strikes.
Although the agreement had largely broken down, North Korea did not restart work on the two production size nuclear power plants that were frozen under the agreement. These plants could potentially have produced enough weapons-grade plutonium to produce several nuclear weapons per year. The Agreed Framework was successful in freezing North Korean plutonium production in Yongbyon plutonium complex for eight years From 1994 to December, 2002.
Discussions are taking place through the Six-party talks about a replacement agreement, reaching a preliminary accord on September 19, 2005. The accord makes no mention of the U.S. contention that North Korea has a secret, underground enriched uranium program. However the new accord would require North Korea to dismantle all nuclear facilities, not just specific plants as in the Agreed Framework. This has been followed up by the February 13, 2007 agreement which has largely adopted this September 19 statement. Its implementation has been successful so far, with only a slight delay being recorded due to an issue of funds being unfrozen by the US actually reaching North Korea.
On brink of Last 16, J'lem visits Riga. Reds in good shape, but still hungry for a win; Gilboa faces must-win vs Zagreb
Dec 14, 2010; ALLON SINAI Jerusalem Post 12-14-2010 On brink of Last 16, J'lem visits Riga. Reds in good shape, but still hungry for a win;...