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N. Korea proposes cooperation on East Sea naming dispute

 North Korea proposed joint inter-Korean cooperation in dealing with the naming dispute over the East Sea in which a South Korean organization responded positively, an official said Friday.

   The North sent a notification on Wednesday that historians of the two Koreas join hands in coping with the naming dispute of the East Sea, a government official said.

   Upon the request, the South's Northeast Asian History Foundation responded that the two Koreas hold a meeting in mid-May in the North Korean border town of Kaesong, according to the official.

   South Korea and Japan have been at odds for decades over how to name the sea between the two countries, which South Korea refers to as the "East Sea," while Japan calls it the "Sea of Japan."

   Efforts to promote the name of the sea as the "East Sea" have been renewed recently after Japan last month authorized a set of new textbooks describing South Korea's easternmost islets of Dokdo as its territory.
The issue has remained a thorn in the two countries' relations since Korea gained independence from Japan in 1945 after 36 years of colonial rule. (Yonhap News)
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