ROK proposes inter-Korean talks over defectors

Updated: 2011-04-27 16:08


Twitter Facebook Myspace Yahoo! Linkedin Mixx

SEOUL - The Republic of Korea (ROK) proposed Wednesday holding Red Cross talks with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) next week, an attempt to settle the issue of DPRK nationals who officials here say have defected.

Related readings:
ROK proposes inter-Korean talks over defectorsROK to repatriate 27 DPRK nationals

ROK's Red Cross officials proposed the working-level talks be held on May 4 in the truce village of Panmunjom, which straddles the border between the two Koreas, to discuss confirming the "free will" of four DPRK defectors, according to the unification ministry.

Officials also suggested the two Koreas discuss confirming the free will of ROK people held in the DPRK, the ministry said.

The move comes after Pyongyang repeatedly pressed for talks over repatriation of four DPRK nationals, whose fishing boat carrying 27 others strayed into ROK waters in early February.

ROK last month returned 27 people but let the four remain in there as they expressed their wish to defect, prompting the infuriated DPRK authorities to demand the four in question be brought to an inter-Korean meeting so their free will can be confirmed.

Ten of the 27 DPRK nationals who were sent back home claimed during a rare press conference last week that they were "kidnapped by the ROK navy" and were treated inhumanely.

Seoul's unification ministry, which handles inter-Korean affairs, has denied such claims.


Blowing in the wind

High-Flyers from around the world recently traveled to home of the kite for a very special event.

Preview of the coming issue
Image maker
Changing fortunes

European Edition


Costly dream

Uninhabited havens up for lease but potential customers face wave of challenges in developing them.

Models gear up car sales

Beauty helps steer buyers as market accelerates.

Urban breathing space

City park at heart of Changchun positions itself as top tourism attraction

25 years after Chernobyl
Luxury car show
Peking Opera revival