North Korea again seeks talks with South

PYONGYANG, North Korea, Jan. 16 (UPI) -- North Korea Sunday repeated its appeal for direct talks with the South to ease tensions.

An article in the party newspaper Rodong Sinmun, carried by the government's Korean Central News Agency, called on Seoul to start negotiations soon in response to the North's previous proposals, Yonhap reported.


"Dialogue and negotiations are the only just way for independently solving the issue of the country's reunification by the concerted efforts of the Koreans," said the paper. "No issue can be solved by way of confrontation. This is proved by the last three years of confrontation."

The article did not mention the North's attacks on a South Korean ship and border island last year.

North Korea has repeatedly proposed talks to advance economic cooperation in recent weeks. It wants a meeting Feb. 9 to plan a joint factory complex and on Feb. 11 on resuming cross-border tours.

But the South Korean government has spurned the overtures, saying North Korea must first affirm its commitment to denuclearization.

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