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    Rival Koreas Agree on Family Reunion Talks


    by NTDTelevision

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    South Korea says it has accepted a proposal by North Korea to hold Red Cross talks on the reunions of families split by the Korean War. This comes after the start of military talks along the border to ease tensions between the two countries.

    On Wednesday, South Korea said it had accepted a proposal by North Korea to hold talks to reunite families split by the Korean War.

    [Lee Jong-joo, Spokeswoman, South Korean Unification Ministry]:
    "We agreed to the North's principle to hold inter-Korea Red Cross talks via a letter in the name of our Red Cross Chief. We also delivered our position that the detailed date and venue will be discussed and decided between the two sides after bilateral high-level military talks."

    The announcement comes as the neighbors held a second day of military talks along the border.

    Over the past decade, more than 20,000 South Koreans have been briefly reunited with their relatives. But time is running out for many of the aging 80,000 still waiting for a chance to meet long-lost family members.

    Last October, some 200 Korean families split by the Korean War were reunited in the first such exchange in more than year.

    Separately, colonels from the two Koreas met again at their heavily fortified border on Wednesday, a day after they argued over procedural matters to set up a higher-level meeting.

    The South demanded that North Korea take responsibility for the sinking of one of its warships last March and the shelling of Yeonpyeong Island, and promise not to provoke the South again.

    In return, the North said the subject of attacks should be discussed at the higher-level meeting.

    Officials say it may take several rounds of working-level discussions to prepare for the senior level meeting.