By Yoo Seungki
SEOUL, March 18 (Xinhua) -- One of South Korea's prospective presidential contenders, who was the best hope for progressive voters four years earlier, championed a parallel approach of sanctions and dialogue to the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s nuclear program.
Ahn Cheol-soo of the minor opposition People's Party said during a dinner meeting with foreign correspondents in Seoul Friday that dialogue will be able to run parallel with sanctions, referring to the long-stalled six-party talks China has offered to resume.
The aid-for-disarmament dialogue to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula has been suspended since late 2008. The six-way dialogue involves the two Koreas, China, the United States, Russia and Japan.
"No precedent is found (in history) that sanctions brought a regime collapse. Nobody has asked questions about what the purpose of sanctions is," said Ahn.
The former People's Party chief said the purpose was to arrange a dialogue table at the right time and under the right conditions, stressing the need to restart any dialogue as rapidly as possible that includes the four-way talks among the two Koreas, China and the U.S. as well as the six-party dialogue.
The four-way talks had been held from 1996 to 1999 to defuse tensions and build a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula, helping lead to the first inter-Korean summit talks in 2000.
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