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Wed, 03 Jan 2018 14:29 - Updated Wed, 03 Jan 2018 14:29

S. Korea welcomes reopening of communication channel with DPRK

SEOUL - South Korea's presidential palace Blue House welcomed the reopening of communication channel with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) Wednesday, saying it would indicate a restored inter-Korean dialogue in a regular way.

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Yoon Young-chan, senior press secretary for South Korean President Moon Jae-in, told reporters that the reopening had a great meaning, saying it would make possible inter-Korean talks in a regular manner.

The comments followed the DPRK's announcement earlier in the day that it will reopen the communication channel in the truce village of Panmunjom from 3:30 p.m. local time.

The inter-Korean communication channel had been cut off since the previous South Korean government unilaterally closed down the inter-Korean industrial zone in the DPRK's border town of Kaesong following Pyongyang's fourth nuclear test in January 2016.

Seoul's unification ministry said in a government statement that it hailed Pyongyang's positive response to Seoul's offer Tuesday to resume the communication channel in Panmunjom.

It said South Korea will make working-level discussions on issues on the senior-level, inter-governmental dialogue, which Seoul proposed Tuesday to Pyongyang, through the restored communication channel.

South Korea offered to the DPRK holding such talks on Jan. 9 to discuss the dispatch of the DPRK's delegation to the 2018 Winter Olympics set to be held in February in South Korea's eastern county of Pyeongchang.

The dialogue overture came a day after the DPRK's leader said in his New Year address that his country was willing to participate in the South Korea-hosted winter sports event and talk with South Korea about the DPRK's delegation dispatch. Xinhua

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