South Korea offers to talk with North on tensions and family reunions

Pauline Gross
July 18, 2017

Suh called on Pyongyang to restore the military communications line in the western region to send a reply to South Korea's dialogue overture, expressing anticipation of the DPRK's positive response. South Korea's Red Cross said on Monday, July 17, 2017, it wants separate talks at the border village on August 1 to discuss family reunions. "The level of criticism was weaker than what we feared", a government official here said. Ties between the Koreas have plunged over the North's expanding missile and nuclear programs and the hard-line policies of Moon's conservative predecessors.

South Korea has suggested holding a meeting on Friday in the so-called Joint Security Area in the Korean Demilitarized zone, the de-facto border between the two countries, according to Deputy Defence Minister Suh Choo-suk.

The country's Red Cross also wants to open talks of its own "to discuss restarting reunions between families separated by the Korean War", NPR's Elise Hu notes.

South Korea on Monday offered to hold military discussions with North Korea for the first time in almost three years in an effort to reduce tensions on the Korean peninsula.

South Korea on Monday offered military and Red Cross talks with North Korea to ease military tensions along the border and resume humanitarian exchange between peoples of the two sides.

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Moscow alleges to have evidence that the missile which North Korea just tested is an intermediate range one and not an ICBM, while Seoul came out earlier this week and said that it doesn't believe that Pyongyang has ICBM re-entry technology. But he has achieved little progress, with North Korea test-firing a series of newly developed missiles.

China defended Thursday its purchase of iron ore from North Korea following criticism by U.S. President Donald Trump and said it is "strictly and earnestly" complying with United Nations sanctions.

North Korea is believed to possess hundreds of missiles capable of striking South Korea and Japan.

After the ICBM launch, Kim said he would never negotiate over his weapons programs as long as US hostility and nuclear threats persist. It is anxious about an influx of refugees and possible U.S. troops stationed on its border in a unified Korea.

Other reports by GizPress

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