SEOUL, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- South Korea expressed Friday regrets over the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s fresh appeal for ending hostilities between the two Koreas, urging Pyongyang to take"real action"to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula. "It is very regrettable for North Korea (DPRK) to distort facts and mislead public opinion while making ridiculous claims," Unification Ministry spokesman Kim Eui-do told reporters at a regular press briefing Friday.
His comments were made to make an official response to Pyongyang's so-called "weight"proposal. The DPRK's National Defense Commission on Thursday called for a halt of verbal and military provocation between the two Koreas, urging practical measures to be taken to prevent a"nuclear disaster"on the peninsula. "It was North Korea (DPRK) that violated the agreement to stop the inter-Korean slander and calumny,"said Kim. "North Korea claimed the halt of slander and calumny just two weeks ago through its New Year's message, but it has since continued its slander and threats against us."
Kim stressed that trust between the two Koreas should be demonstrated by real action, not by words.
Touching on the joint military drills with the United States, Kim said that it was an annual, regular military exercise, of which neighboring countries, including the DPRK, have been notified according to the international agreement.
Kim said that the DPRK should take responsible measures over its past provocations such as artillery attack of a front-line Yeonpyeong island around three years ago, urging Pyongyang to stop complaining about the legitimate military drills.
South Korea's Defense Ministry said Thursday that its joint military drills with the U.S., known as Key Resolve and Foal Eagle, will go ahead as scheduled from late February to April, ignoring Pyongyang's demand for cancellation a day earlier.
Meanwhile, Seoul urged Pyongyang to take"real action"to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula."The essence of the nuclear issue lies at North Korea (DPRK)'s nuclear development,"Kim said.
Kim said that the DPRK threatened peace on the peninsula and in the Northeast Asia by upgrading its nuclear weapons capabilities through several nuclear tests in violation of the agreement with the international community, urging Pyongyang to take immediate action for the denuclearization to secure peace on the peninsula.
The spokesman repeated Seoul's call for holding reunion of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War, saying that it is an urgent, humanitarian issue that cannot be linked to political and military situations.
In her New Year's speech, South Korean President Park Geun-hye proposed the family reunion around the Lunar New Year's Day, but the DRPK rejected the offer, adding that the joint military drills between Seoul and Washington and its hopes for resuming the tour to the DPRK's Mount Kumgang resort should be tackled together.
Video>>>DPRK issues proposal to prevent "nuclear disaster"
S.Korea urges DPRK to take action for denuclearization
SEOUL, Jan. 17 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's unification ministry on Friday urged the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to take real action to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula, in response to Pyongyang's fresh appeal for ending hostilities between the two Koreas. Full story
U.S. urges DPRK to quit nuclear program after Pyongyang's peace call
WASHINGTON, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) -- The United States on Thursday renewed its call for the Democratic People's Republic of Korea ( DPRK) to abandon its nuclear program after Pyongyang's fresh appeal for ending hostilities on the Korean Peninsula.
"Our core policy on North Korea remains unchanged," State Department spokeswoman Jennifer Psaki told reporters at a regular news briefing. Full story