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North Korea Demands U.S. Troop Withdrawal

North Korea on Sunday issued a New Year's message demanding the withdrawal of U.S. troops from South Korea.

The New Year's message didn't mention a word about the nuclear standoff with the United States.

"The entire nation should firmly defend peace and security on the Korean Peninsula by turning out in the Struggle to resolutely foil the U.S. attempt to launch another war. We must remove the root cause of war completely from this land by launching a nationwide campaign for driving out the U.S. troops," said a joint editorial by North Korea's Rodong Sinmun and two other major state-run newspapers.

North Korea traditionally marks New Year's Day with a joint editorial by the country's three major newspapers representing its communist party, military and youth militia force. The editorial was carried by the North's Korean Central News Agency.

The United States, the two Koreas, China, Japan and Russia have held five rounds of talks since 2003 to find a way of ending North Korea's nuclear ambitions.

In September, North Korea agreed to give up its atomic programs in return for aid and security assurances. But no progress has been made on implementing the agreement after North Korea placed conditions on its disarmament. The United States has rejected such conditions.