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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 October, 2003, 09:57 GMT 10:57 UK
Apec stresses fight against terror
Apec leaders pose for final group photo
The summit ended with a traditional display of finery
Asian and Pacific leaders have ended a summit in Bangkok calling for increased measures to stop the spread of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction.

The meeting's chairman, Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, also pressed for further talks involving North Korea and the United States, calling on both sides to resolve the nuclear stand-off through dialogue.

The Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation (Apec) meeting stressed its economic heritage by calling for increased trade liberalisation and a new impetus for trade talks which stalled in Mexico last month.

APEC RESTATES ITS AIMS
Achieve stability, security and prosperity
Advance the Doha round of trade talks
Dismantle terrorist groups and eliminate WMD
Support six-party talks on North Korea

But the summit was overshadowed by US concerns about regional security, and North Korea's reported test-firing of at least one short-range missile.

Unconfirmed reports on Tuesday suggested the North might have fired a second surface-to-ship missile into the sea between the Korean peninsula and Japan, after a similar test on Monday.

Mr Thaksin said dialogue should address "all the concerns of the parties including the security concerns raised by [North Korea]", referring to US hints it might be prepared to offer North Korea guarantees it would not be attacked.

Missile tests

Mr Bush, who left Thailand for Singapore on the fourth leg of a six-nation Asian tour, has sounded upbeat on the subject, saying that "we're making good progress on peacefully solving the issue with North Korea".

APEC MEMBERS
Australia
Brunei
Canada
Chile
China
Hong Kong
Indonesia
Japan
Malaysia
Mexico
New Zealand
PNG
Peru
Philippines
Russia
Singapore
South Korea
Taiwan
Thailand
US
Vietnam
The statement followed earlier remarks in which he ruled out the formal non-aggression treaty with the North that Pyongyang has demanded, but hinted that there might be room for some other form of written security pledge.

However, optimism about the chance of fresh talks was overshadowed by reports that Pyongyang had test-fired another short-range missile on Tuesday.

Japanese officials said that the launches posed no immediate threat to neighbouring countries as the missiles only had a range of up to 100 kilometres (62 miles).

It was believed that any missiles had landed in the sea between the Korean peninsula and Japan.

However, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff said it did not believe any missile had been fired by the North on Tuesday.

"Our system did not spot any missile launch today by North Korea," a South Korean spokesman told Reuters news agency.

At the Apec summit, the US emphasis on the fight against terrorism has upset some delegates, who believe the organisation should stick to its stated mission of promoting free trade.

Malaysian Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said Apec was set up as an economic and trade body and should not be dominated by security issues.

But the US insisted that terror was threatening regional economies.

"Every nation, every economy represented here, every business, every leader, every one of us is a potential target for terrorist activities," US Secretary of State Colin Powell said.




WATCH AND LISTEN
The BBC's Kylie Morris
"An Apec summit that wasn't quite made to measure"



SEE ALSO:
Apec disappoints region's media
21 Oct 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Apec declaration: Key points
21 Oct 03  |  Asia-Pacific
How APEC has changed
21 Oct 03  |  Asia-Pacific
Nuclear moves ease tensions
20 Oct 03  |  Asia-Pacific
China to study currency shift
19 Oct 03  |  Business
Thailand's mass Apec clean-up
16 Oct 03  |  Asia-Pacific
World trade blocs: APEC
03 Sep 03  |  Business


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