News Worms
News Worms


Seoul Seeks New Talks With North Korea, Hoping To Tamp Down Tensions

Seoul Seeks New Talks With North Korea, Hoping To Tamp Down Tensions

Seoul's Unification Ministry says these latest proposals are in line with President Moon Jae-in's dual track policy to pursue both engagement with the Kim Jong Un government while also supporting USA led sanctions to pressure Pyongyang to halt its nuclear and ballistic missiles programs.

Meanwhile, it's quite uncertain whether the North will return to Red Cross talks.

Last week during a trip to Berlin, Moon delivered a speech in which he stressed the importance of dialogue in the face of increasing tensions and the North's nuclearisation.

The offer comes after the North claimed to have conducted the first test of an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) earlier this month, and said it had mastered the technology to mount a nuclear warhead on the missile.

Kim Yong-hyun, a professor of North Korean studies at Dongguk University, who also served as an adviser for President Moon Jae-in's de facto transition team, said if North Korea was ever to agree to the talk, it would only do so to press its own agenda.

On Monday, Seoul's Defense Ministry proposed talks at the border village of Panmunjom this Friday to discuss how to ease border-area tensions, while the Red Cross said it wants separate talks at Panmunjom on August 1 to discuss family reunions.

If realized, the talks would be the first inter-Korean dialogue since December 2015.

As the North's leader Kim Jong-un addressed the 7th Congress of the Workers' Party of Korea in May a year ago, he voiced hope for military talks with the South, saying it would serve as an opportunity for comprehensive consultations on removing possible risks of an armed clash in the border area and easing tension.

The sporadically held reunions last took place at a mountain resort in North Korea in October 2015, when hundreds of elderly Koreans and their family members met their long-lost relatives for the first time since they were split during the Korean War.

China, which has close ties to Pyongyang despite Beijing's anger over North Korea's missile and nuclear tests, welcomed the proposal, saying cooperation and reconciliation between the two Koreas was good for everyone and could help ease tensions. South Korea has recently accused the North of sending military drones to spy on the South, an issue that Seoul would be likely to raise.

After the launch, the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, said he would never negotiate his weapons programmes unless the United States abandons its hostile policy toward his country.

The dialogue was aimed at stopping all hostile acts that escalate military tensions near the military demarcation line (MDL) dividing the two Koreas, the vice minister said.

North Korea has long demanded suspension of the allies' annual military drills and United States deployment of strategic assets as a precondition for inter-Korean dialogue.

During his speech in Berlin on July 6, Moon laid out his vision for bringing peace to the Korean Peninsula, including a proposal to mutually halt acts of hostility along their tense border as of the July 27 anniversary of the armistice treaty that ended the three-year Korean War in 1953.

follow

editors' picks

July 17, 2017
Senate delays health care vote until John McCain recovers from surgery
The changes got Johnson to say he'd vote "yes" to start debating the bill, but he then raised new concerns in Green Bay. That means that McConnell, even if he keeps Johnson's vote, will definitely not have 50 votes until McCain returns.

July 17, 2017
Teenager arrested following a series of acid attacks in northwest London
Possession of acid or other corrosive substances with the intention to do harm already carries a four-year maximum penalty. London's police chief, Cressida Dick, said officers were concerned by the increase in the "completely barbaric " attacks.

July 16, 2017
Ranbir Kapoor And Katrina Kaif Starrer Jagga Jasoos First Day Collection!
But as The film budget is 100 crore, to recover the money it has to sustain and keep growing over the first week. It tells the story of a teenage detective, played by Ranbir Kapoor , who is in search of his missing father .

July 16, 2017
Three militants killed in ongoing encounter in Kashmir'Tral
This came a day after militants attacked a bus carrying Amarnath Yatra pilgrims in Jammu and Kashmir's Anantnag district. Meanwhile, exchange of firing between the militants and government forces was going on at Wantwon Satoora forest area.

July 16, 2017
Chelsea complete signing of Monaco's Bakayoko
The signing will be a boost for Antonio Conte , who has been frustrated by problems in the transfer market to this point. The France global played a key role as Leonardo Jardim's underdogs battled their way to the Champions League semi-finals.

July 16, 2017
Pelicans, Rajon Rondo agree to one-year deal
He also has played 96 playoff games, won a championship with the Celtics in 2007-08 and can provide leadership. Rondo spent the 2015-16 season in Sacramento playing alongside fellow former Kentucky star Cousins.

July 16, 2017
Teaser for Disney's 'A Wrinkle In Time' released
Head of Production from Disneys live action studio Sean Bailey introduced the cast and launched the trailer. Who - who speaks entirely in riddles - now quotes from the contemporary scholar, Jay-Z.

July 16, 2017
Hearing in Charlie Gard case set to resume
The judge in the Charlie Gard case has ordered little boy's head to be measured to determine if there is any brain development. He's now on a ventilator from which Great Ormond Street Hospital officials want to remove him against his parents' wishes.

July 16, 2017
Second Marine identified in plane crash
Friends and family have identified Wednesday four of the 16 servicemembers killed in a fiery KC-130 tanker crash in Mississippi . A second Marine with local ties has been identified as one of the victims in the fiery plane crash in MS earlier this week.

July 16, 2017
Veteran's dying wish is for you to give him a call
An Army veteran in hospice care with a terminal illness asked his wife recently to hold his phone for him in case anyone calls. He got tons of cards, calls, and texts from a lot of strangers that wished him the best and prayed for him to recover.