SEOUL, Jan. 26 (Xinhua) -- Top U.S. diplomat for East Asian affairs visited South Korea on Sunday to discuss issues on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) after the two Koreas agreed to hold reunion of separated families.
Daniel Russel, assistant secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, who accompanied deputy Secretary of State William Burns during his trip to China and Japan, met in Seoul with South Korean deputy Foreign Minister Lee Kyung-soo.
Russel reportedly explained Lee about the results of Burns' travel to China and Japan, while having an in-depth discussion on the DPRK issue, according to local media reports.
After the meeting, the U.S. diplomat told reporters that his visit was part of intensive consultations between Seoul and Washington on important issues related to the DPRK.
The two allies had strengthened consultations on the DPRK issue since South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se agreed with his U. S. counterpart on it during his trip to Washington on Jan. 7.
Burns visited Seoul on Jan. 21 before Russel's travel to the country. Glyn Davies, U.S. special representative for the DPRK policy, was scheduled to come here on Jan. 29 to have a meeting with Cho Tae-yong who represents South Korea at the six-party talks.
The six-party talks, the aid-for-denuclearization dialogue including the two Koreas, the United States, China, Japan and Russia, have been suspended since late 2008. Seoul and Washington have demanded Pyongyang to show its sincerity towards the denuclearization before resuming the multilateral dialogue.
The DPRK proposed Friday to South Korea to hold reunion of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War in its scenic resort of Mount Kumgang at any date of South Korea's convenience after the Lunar New Year's holiday.
Pyongyang recently reiterated its peace call to Seoul, saying that the two Koreas should stop all hostile acts from Jan. 30 on the eve of the Lunar New Year.
Despite the looming dialogue mood, cautions remained as South Korea and the United States are set to conduct the annual joint military drills from late February to April. The DPRK denounced it as a rehearsal to the northward invasion.
Two Koreas agree to hold family reunion
SEOUL, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- South Korea on Friday welcomed the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s acceptance of its recent proposal to hold reunion of separated families, heralding a thaw in inter-Korean relations amid Pyongyang's repeated peace call.
Seoul's Unification Ministry said in a statement that the DPRK sent a notice in the name of the Red Cross at around 6 p.m. Friday to propose holding reunion of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War. Full story
DPRK offers to S.Korea to hold reunion of separated families
SEOUL, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) on Friday offered to South Korea to hold a reunion of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War, Seoul's Unification Ministry said.
The Unification Ministry said in an e-mailed statement that the DPRK sent a notice in the name of the Red Cross Friday afternoon, proposing to hold the family reunion event after the Lunar New Year's holiday. Full story
S.Korea urges DPRK to prove sincerity with action
SEOUL, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- South Korea on Friday doubted about sincerity of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s recent peace call, citing past provocations.
Responding to the DPRK's open letter, Unification Ministry spokesman Kim Eui-do said in an official statement that Seoul still doubted about sincerity of the DPRK's recent peace overture as there were several times when Pyongyang provoked after calling for peace. Full story