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North Korea seeks talks with US
June 17, 2013, 4:47 am

Tensions have been high between the two Koreas since Pyongyang broke off ceasefire agreements [Getty Images]

Tensions have been high between the two Koreas since Pyongyang broke off ceasefire agreements [Getty Images]

Following a recent failed effort to revive direct talks with its southern neighbour, North Korea has now turned to the US, signalling it is ready to participate in high-level regional security talks with Washington.

“(We) propose high-level talks between the North Korean and US governments to ease tensions on the Korean Peninsula, and establish regional peace and security,” the Yonhap news agency said on Sunday, citing a statement by the North’s National Defense Commission.

The move comes five days after planned negotiations between the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and South Korea collapsed over Pyongyang’s claim that Seoul fielded negotiators of insufficient rank.

The DPRK complained that South Korea had deliberately hindered the resumption of the talks.

The two Koreas technically remain “at war” since no peace treaty was signed when the Korean War ended in 1953.

Tensions mounted on the Korean Peninsula earlier this year after North Korea conducted new nuclear and missile tests.

Pyongyang threatened Seoul and the United States with war and closed off the joint industrial zone in Kaesong following a new round of international sanctions, but later voiced willingness to negotiate.

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