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Durban climate talks to open amid divisions among countries

DURBAN, South Africa, Nov. 28 — Delegates from nearly 200 countries will start annual talks in Durban, South Africa, on Monday to discuss fighting global warming, but rich and developing countries remain apart on how to tackle the common challenge.

The biggest issue facing the 17th Conference of the Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, or COP17, is how to avoid the so-called blank period following the expiration in December 2012 of the Kyoto protocol, the world's only legally binding framework to rein in emissions, and how nations can narrow their differences.

While the U.N. climate talks are aimed at forging a new framework that will encompass all the countries, striking a deal at the Durban round, which is scheduled to run through Dec. 9, and launching a new framework from 2013 is considered almost out of reach.(PNA/Kyodo)

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