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Byline: Michael A. Lev
By Michael A. Lev
BEIJING _ Three days of multi-national talks over North Korea's dangerous nuclear ambitions began Wednesday, but already one diplomatic victory seems assured: the emergence of China as a legitimate force on the international stage.
Analysts and diplomats, including those from the United States, credit China with quietly coaxing, and perhaps coercing, North Korea to come to the bargaining table. But whether Pyongyang is willing to deal away its nuclear weapons program remains to be seen.
On Wednesday, China called for a "calm and patient attitude" for the meetings, arranged after months of diplomacy. Envoys for the United States and North Korea shook hands, as did others, before they got to work.
"A warm welcome to you all," Chinese Vice Foreign …