A U.S. Congressman visiting North Korea says he will discuss the Stalinist regime's nuclear program and human rights issues during talks with Pyongyang officials.

Congressman Tom Lantos (Democrat from California) told reporters during a stopover in Beijing today (Saturday) that he would discuss the North's nuclear program, human rights matters, and hopefully, their reintegration into the international community.

Mr. Lantos' four-day visit comes ahead of a separate visit next week by a delegation of U.S. lawmakers headed by Republican Congressman Curt Weldon.

Mr. Lantos was a sponsor of the North Korean Human Rights Act enacted last October, which budgets 24 million dollars a year for North Korea refugees.

North Korea angrily condemned the legislation as proof of Washington's intent to topple the communist nation.