2 Koreas hold working-level military talks

September 13 2018

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The two Koreas held working-level military talks on Thursday to discuss  details of a comprehensive agreement to flesh out the military part of  their April summit accord aimed at reducing border tensions and building  mutual trust.

The meeting began at 10 a.m. at Tongilgak, a North  Korea-controlled building in the truce village of Panmunjom within the  Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) separating the two Koreas, reports Yonhap News  Agency.

Pyongyang recently made the proposal for the talks, which Seoul accepted later.

Army Col. Cho Yong-geun is leading South Korea's three-member delegation, while the North's side is led by Col. Om Chang-nam.

"We  will have discussions related to the agreement on the military part (of  the summit accord)," Cho told Yonhap before the talks.

The two  sides are expected to discuss a series of issues, such as withdrawing  DMZ guard posts on a trial basis, carrying out a joint project to  excavate Korean War remains in the buffer zone and disarming the Joint  Security Area in Panmunjom.

The results of the talks are likely  to be included in the envisioned military agreement, which is expected  to be officially adopted by President Moon Jae-in and his North Korean  counterpart Kim Jong-un during their third summit slated to take place  in Pyongyang from September 18 to 20.

During the July 31  general-grade talks, Seoul and Pyongyang shared the understanding in  "broad terms" over the issues of fostering peace in the DMZ in line with  the April summit agreement to transform the border area into a "peace  zone".

Also during the working-level meeting, Seoul is likely to  push for the establishment of a joint military committee and a direct  communication line between the military leaders of the two Koreas, which  is likely to be included in the military agreement.

Some  observers say that the two sides could also discuss the inclusion of  measures to prevent any naval clashes near the Northern Limit Line  (NLL), a de facto maritime boundary.

During the April summit,  Moon and Kim agreed to devise a practical scheme to turn the areas  around the NLL into a "maritime peace zone" in order to prevent  accidental military clashes and guarantee safe fishing activities.

  • Source
  • IANS