DPRK's proposal on peace treaty different from S. Korea's original position: official

18:34, January 11, 2010      

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The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s proposal on peace treaty is somewhat different from South Korea's original position on it, a foreign ministry official said later Monday.

The official's remark came after the DPRK said earlier in the day that it would discuss reaching a peace treaty with relevant state parties to replace the Armistice Agreement that ended the 1950-1953 Korean War, either in the framework of the six-party talks, or in a "separate forum" as what the Joint Statement of September 2005 proposed.

"We cannot say it is all good news," S. Korea's Yonhap News Agency quoted an unnamed foreign ministry official as saying, noting the DPRK's proposal is somewhat different from Seoul's position on such talks, because the format for talks on such a peace treaty that was agreed in the Joint Statement of September 2005 was "a forum separate from the six-party talks."

"Based on the position made by the government on many occasions previously, the remark is reasonable," another foreign ministry official said as Xinhua tried to verify the Yonhap's report.

He added the government is likely to make a formal response to the issue later after it thoroughly reviews the DPRK's proposal.

According to Yonhap, the South Korean Foreign Minister has said in an interview with Yonhap on Jan. 6 that Seoul will reject the DPRK's recent proposal for separate talks to discuss replacing the Korean armistice with a permanent peace treaty if the proposal is only an attempt to stall its denuclearization process.

"If North Korea has sincerity about a peace treaty, it will have to first show it with a decision to denuclearize," Yu said.

Source: Xinhua
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