Published : 2013-08-27 15:50
Updated : 2013-08-27 15:50
The Ministry of Unification said the date reflects the need to first concentrate on ongoing efforts to arrange reunions for families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War and reopen the inter-Korean factory park in Kaesong.
Seoul had originally proposed holding Mount Geumgang talks on Sept. 25, but the North wanted negotiations to be held in late August of early September.
"Seoul feels that there is no need to rush the talks," said the official, who declined to be identified. He stressed that the tours must be separated from the family reunions.
This is in contrast to the North's claim that the Mount Geumgang tours are linked to family reunions.
The ministry official added that the North has accepted calls by Seoul to allow an advanced party to visit the mountain resort on Wednesday and Thursday to check various facilities needed for the reunions set for Sept. 25-30.
This team will be made up of 56 people and be led by a representative from the Korea National Red Cross and Hyundai Asan Corp. as well as technicians from such companies as the Korea Electric Power Corp.
Earlier in the day the ministry in charge of inter-Korean relations said the South sees family reunions as an important humanitarian venture that needs to be separated from economical and political events.
It said if tours are to resume, the North needs to rescind all unilateral actions it took to confiscate property at the resort that was built with South Korean capital. (Yonhap News)