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North and South Korean delegations determined to solve Kaesong issue

July 23, 2013, 6:55 UTC+3

The parties agreed to hold next round of negotiations July 25

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PYONGYANG, July 23 (Itar-Tass) - The North and South Korean delegations have discussed the terms of resuming the operation of the Kaesong industrial complex at the recently-held working talks, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said in a report released on Tuesday. The agency said that the two sides had shown genuine interest in finding a solution to this problem and agreed to hold the next 6th round of talks on July 25 to finalize the details.

The North and South Korean delegations are meeting in the Kaesong industrial town located to the north off the demilitarized zone. Experts believe that the sides will be able to reach an agreement to resume the industrial zone’s operation after both have suffered tangible financial losses since it was stopped on April 9 this year.

In April 2013, Pyongyang announced that it would stop the operation of the Kaesong industrial complex. That was a period of sharp aggravation of relations between the two Korean states. North Korea said that it would consider in detail a possible closure or resumption of the zone’s operation. Pyongyang explained that the reason behind its actions was an intention of the South Korean regime to turn the zone into a seat of confrontation between compatriots in the north and south of the Korean peninsula.

A total of 123 South Korean companies used to operate in the joint industrial zone. Its enterprises employed over 800 South Koreans and about 53,000 North Korean workers who sew clothes and assembled watches and household electric appliances.


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