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Climate issues unresolved despite Bangkok talks

United Nations climate talks in Bangkok have ended without progress on issues of emission cuts for wealthy nations or financing for developing ones.

Negotiations on the topics, both of which are crucial to reaching a global warming pact, have been deadlocked for months.

In a statement released on Friday, Switzerland's Federal Environment Office said "considerable differences" between states remained. It nevertheless characterised the negotiations as "significant progress".

Delegates in Bangkok raised doubts over whether a new climate agreement to rein in greenhouse gases can be reached by the time world leaders gather in Copenhagen in December. The pact would replace the Kyoto Protocol, which expires in 2012.

Shayam Saran, India's special envoy for climate change, told reporters he was "dismayed" that developed nations hadn't announced plans for deep emissions cuts.

Switzerland, along with the European Union, has pledged to cut emissions by 20 per cent by 2020. Norway made an offer to cut emissions by 30 per cent and by as much as 40 per cent if developed countries followed suit.

"With only five negotiating days we can't continue to waste time on missing political mandates," said Kim Carstensen from environmental group WWF.

The United States came under particular criticism for making few significant contributions during the Bangkok talks – partly due to the fact it has yet to pass domestic climate legislation – and allowing other nations to hide behind its inaction.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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