S.Korea proposes inter-Korean military talks on Sept. 30

21:14, September 19, 2010      

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South Korea on Sunday proposed holding inter-Korean military talks on Sept. 30, while insisting that the talks should focus on issues related to the sinking of a South Korean warship in March, Seoul's Ministry of National Defense said.

The proposal came in response to the suggestion by the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) Wednesday on working- level talks at the border truce village of Panmunjom on Sept. 24.

Seoul proposed postponing the meeting date initially suggested by the DPRK because "it was too early", a ministry official was quoted as saying by local media.

In a message to the North, Seoul also said the talks should focus on "responsible measures" Pyongyang should take to defuse tension between the two sides over the sinking of South Korean warship Cheonan, the ministry said in a press release.

According to local media, the DPRK on Wednesday proposed discussing "pending issues" over the implementation of the inter- Korean military agreement, including the disputed "Northern Limit Line (NLL)" in waters off the west coast, and anti-Pyongyang propaganda leaflets being flown into the North.

The talks, if held, would be the first of this kind in two years. The latest inter-Korean military talks were held in Oct. 2, 2008.

Seoul blamed Pyongyang for the warship sinking, which killed 46 South Korean soldiers, but the DPRK has repeatedly denied any involvement in the incident.

After Seoul rejected Pyongyang's demand of dispatching inspectors to South Korea to verify Seoul's claim, the DPRK held five rounds of working-level meeting with the U.S.-led United Nations Command (UNC) over the Cheonan issue.

According to the DPRK's official news agency KCNA, in the latest meeting last Wednesday, Pyongyang proposed forming a DPRK-U. S. joint inspection group to investigate the truth of the Cheonan case, but the U.S. side rejected the suggestion.

Source: Xinhua


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