Seoul, South Korea- South Korea urged North Korea on Wednesday to resolve a standoff over its nuclear ambitions, describing ongoing international nuclear disarmament talks in Beijing as a historic opportunity to end the dispute.
South Korean Unification Minister Chung Dong-young issued the plea at inter-Korean Cabinet-level talks under way in the North Korean capital of Pyongyang, according to pool reports.
The ministerial meeting coincided with six-country negotiations in Beijing aimed at getting the North to give up its nuclear weapons program. That meeting, which involves the United States, the two Koreas, China, Japan and Russia, resumed Tuesday after more than a month”s recess, but initial indications were not positive.
"I think (the North) should not lose this chance … (it) must seize on this historic opportunity," Chung told the meeting, referring to the Beijing talks.
Chung”s North Korean counterpart, Kwon Ho Ung, a senior Cabinet counselor, avoided a direct response to the appeal, saying only that the two Koreas should end their national division that he said was caused by "outside forces," the Associated Press quoted the pool reports as saying.