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S. Korea pledges efforts to advance inter-Korean ties despite NK missile launch

The flags of South and North Korea (123rf)
The flags of South and North Korea (123rf)
South Korea will continue efforts to stabilize situations on the Korean Peninsula and advance stalled inter-Korean relations through dialogue and cooperation despite North Korea's latest missile test, the unification ministry said Tuesday.

Earlier in the day, North Korea fired what appears to be one short-range missile into the East Sea. The firing came days after North Korea expressed a willingness to discuss the improvement of inter-Korean relations and even a summit between their leaders.

"With regard to such acts as the North's missile launches that escalate military tensions, we will keep working for the peaceful and stable management of situations on the Korean Peninsula," a unification ministry official here told reporters.

"On the other hand, it is also the government's stance to keep working on the advancement of peace and inter-Korean relations on the Korean Peninsula through dialogue and cooperation," the official added.

Tuesday's missile firing came three days after Kim Yo-jong, sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, said that Pyongyang could declare a formal end to the Korean War as suggested by the South and even discuss the possibility of a summit.

She, however, noted they can take place only when South Korea drops its double standards of denouncing the North's "self-defense" weapons tests as "provocations" while beautifying its own arms buildup.

In Seoul, top security officials held an emergency security meeting of the National Security Council and voiced regret over the launch. President Moon Jae-in ordered a "comprehensive analysis" of the missile launch and recent statements from the North, his office said. (Yonhap)