South Korea proposes military talks to North Korea

Despite condemning the ICBM test, South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Monday offered talks with North Korea, indicating for the first time since his inauguration in May that he wants to use dialogue to defuse the worldwide standoff over the North's nuclear and missile programs.

Cho added, "In principle, we haven't changed our basic stance that we would use whatever method we have to press North Korea towards denuclearization, including sanctions [against the regime] when the North carries out a nuclear or missile provocation, and dialogue".

In a statement, Vice Defense Minister Suh Choo Suk said on Monday, that the South's defense officials are proposing talks to be held at the border village of Panmunjom on Friday aimed at ending hostile activities along the border.

North Korea considers that the latest Washington's calls on the global community to increase the pressure on Pyongyang hamper any possibility of negotiations on the country's nuclear program, the state-owned Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported Sunday. The December 2015 talks at a now-stalled joint factory park in North Korea ended with no breakthroughs.

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Government spokesman Norio Maruyama said North Korea reached "a new level" with its latest launch of an intercontinental ballistic missile as Americans celebrated Independence Day on July 4. Both sides moved to take down loudspeakers and halt all propaganda broadcasts after the agreement, but the broadcasts were resumed under the Park Geun-hye administration in January 2016 following North Korea's fourth nuclear test.

The South Korean Red Cross has proposed a meeting with its North Korean counterpart on August first to arrange reunions of families separated by the Korean War. He proposed reunions of families separated by the War on the October fourth Chuseok holiday, often described as Korea's Thanksgiving.

Last week during a trip to Berlin, Moon delivered a speech in which he stressed the importance of dialogue in the face of increasing tensions and the North's nuclearisation. South Korea usually refers to loudspeaker propaganda broadcasts by both sides, while the North wants a halt to routine joint U.S. But U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley told the council earlier this month that if it is united, the worldwide community can cut off major sources of hard currency to North Korea, restrict oil to its military and weapons programs, increase air and maritime restrictions, and hold senior officials accountable.

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