Russia welcomes high-level inter-Korean talks

MOSCOW, Feb. 16 (PNA/ITAR-TASS) — Russia welcomed high-level talks between North and South Koreas that ended in Panmunjom on Friday, February 14.

“We can only welcome the fact that South and North Koreas have decided to hold the talks in such a format for the first time in the last seven years,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said on Saturday, February 15. “It’s hard to expect that one or two meetings can solve all problems that have piled up over years. Nevertheless, the Republic of Korea and the DPRK could have an interested exchange of opinions and hear out each other in a calm atmosphere,” he said.

The sides reached a number of important agreements. They agreed to organise a meeting of divided families from February 20 to February 25, stop provocative and slanderous statements against each other and build mutual confidence, and hold another round of talks.

“We hope that the algorithm of interaction between the two Korean states set by the latest contacts will help create conditions for continuing and enhancing the inter-Korean dialogue and thus reduce tension on the peninsula,” Lukashevich said.

The South Korean delegation was led by Kim Kyou-hyun, first deputy director of a department of the National Security Agency to the President of ROK, and the North Korean one was headed by Wong Dong Yong, deputy head of the United Front Department of the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea. Taking part in the talks on the South Korean side were also officials of the presidential administration, and Unification and Defence Ministries.

Prior to the talks, Kim Kyou-hyun said, “The South is going to Wednesday’s meetiing with an open position for exploring possibilities for opening up a new Korean Peninsula.” He said he intended to ensure that the declared meeting of families divided by the Korean War of 1950-1953 was held without fail. (PNA/Itar-Tass)