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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

15th Inter-Korean Ministerial Talks Close

Korean Central News Agency of DPRK via Korea News Service (KNS)

    Seoul, June 23 (KCNA Correspondent) -- The 15th north-south ministerial talks that opened in Seoul on June 22 came to a close Thursday. Through the talks the north and the south strikingly demonstrated internally and externally the new feature of the Korean nation joining efforts and cooperating with each other in the era after the publication of the June 15 joint declaration, away from the past framework whereby they quarreled with each other standing in confrontation to save their faces and found themselves locked in the meaningless arguments.
    Prior to the close of the talks, Kwon Ho Ung, head of the delegation of the north side, and Jong Tong Yong, chief delegate of the south side, made speeches.
    Kwon Ho Ung said that both sides exchanged views on the principled and practical issues of definitely putting the north-south relations on the orbit of national cooperation and boosting them, guided by the idea of "By our nation itself," the basic spirit of the June 15 joint declaration, and conducted an exhaustive discussion on them.
    He pointed out that at the talks both sides once again fully demonstrated at home and abroad their unshakable will to invariably hold fast to the joint declaration and thoroughly implement it no matter how the situation may change.
    Noting that the two sides have reached a comprehensive and satisfactory agreement on the immediate and practical tasks to effect national cooperation in the activities to boost the inter-Korean relations, he stressed that the talks once again convinced the Koreans that the idea of "By our nation itself" is the most correct idea of properly developing those relations and they should always keep to this road.
    There are internal and external challenges to the efforts to realize national cooperation and the work to achieve common prosperity but if the north and the south take a patriotic stand to work for the interests common to the nation in order to become one, they can surely cope with any rapidly changing situation at home and abroad and meet any persistent pressure of foreign forces.
    Jong Tong Yong referred, among other things, to the significance of the talks, noting that the south and the north shared the understanding that it is necessary to put the dialogue between the authorities of both sides on a sustainable and regular basis.
    At the talks both sides have reached an agreement on many points from the view of practical utility which calls for placing the national interests above anything else, he said, the south side is satisfied with this.
    A joint press release was made public at the talks.
    On the same day, Ri Hae Chan, prime minister of the south side, hosted a banquet in honor of the delegation of the north side to the talks.

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