Published: Tue, July 18, 2017
World News | By Cecilia Wilkerson

Seoul Seeks New Talks With North Korea, Hoping To Tamp Down Tensions

Seoul Seeks New Talks With North Korea, Hoping To Tamp Down Tensions

European Union sanctions against North Korea date back to 2006 and are part of global efforts to halt a nuclear and ballistic missile programme that experts say is meant to give Pyongyang the capability to hit the U.S. mainland.

Chinese purchases of North Korea iron ore rose 34 percent from a year earlier in the first five months of the year, according to a South Korean industry group, the Korea International Trade Association.

Experts say an extended cut by China would threaten critical supplies of gasoline and diesel and force North Korea to find alternative sources of refined fuel products.

But customs administration spokesman Huang Songping said Beijing was upholding the United Nations sanctions against the regime of Kim Jong-Un. South Korean acting Red Cross chief Kim Sun Hyang told a news conference that it wants separate talks at the border village on August 1 to discuss family reunions.

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At the time, Lever's wife ex-wife claimed that the man was abusing her 11-year-old daughter during unsupervised visitation. Police said on Facebook they were searching for Kenneth Dion Lever , 52, of Florida , calling him "armed and unsafe ".

When asked if South Korea was willing to "be flexible" on military drills with the United States should North Korea be open to talks, Cho said the government had not discussed the matter specifically.

"Trade between China and North Korea grew nearly 40 percent in the first quarter".

Japan yesterday downplayed South Korea's offer to hold military talks with North Korea, saying the priority should be piling pressure on Pyongyang through sanctions.

While the two Koreas have a history of failing to follow through on some rapprochement agreements struck during their rare talks, any dialogue between the rivals is considered a positive step toward easing tensions. In all, the North has conducted five nuclear tests and numerous missile tests. Seoul began blaring anti-Pyongyang broadcasts and K-Pop songs via border loudspeakers, and Pyongyang responded with its own border broadcasts and launches of balloons carrying anti-South leaflets.

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The militants still have about 100 civilian hostages, whom they use as human shields, ammunition carriers, and stretcher-barriers. Gunmen took about a dozen hostages, including a Catholic priest , shortly after seizing Marawi.

Reuters analyzed data at the North Korean defector website Daily NK and found the price of gasoline sold by private dealers in Pyongyang and the northern border cities of Sinuiju and Hyesan jumped to $2.18 per kg ($2.92 per liter) as of July 5, up 50 percent from $1.46 per kg on June 21. Officials have insisted, however, they would only act at South Korea's request.

Tongilgak is a North Korean building at the Panmunjom truce village on the border used for previous inter-Korea talks.

The sporadically held reunions last took place at a mountain resort in North Korea in October 2015, when hundreds of elderly Koreans and their family members met their long-lost relatives for the first time since they were split during the Korean War.

South Korean officials have long called for holding reunions more regularly and expanding the number of people taking part.

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The latest clashes erupted on the death anniversary of militant commander Burhan Wani who was killed in Kashmir past year . He said a mortar shell landed near the house of Territorial Army jawan Mohammad Showkat in Karmara village near the LoC.

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