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N Korea, US hold talks on war dead: Pentagon

The United States and North Korea began talks on Tuesday on resuming efforts to recover the remains of Americans killed during the 1950-53 Korean War.



Bangkok: The United States and North Korea
began talks on Tuesday on resuming efforts to recover the remains
of Americans killed during the 1950-53 Korean War, amid
tentative signs of a thaw in relations.
A US delegation met North Korean counterparts in Bangkok
for negotiations that were expected to last for two or three
days, Major Carie Parker, a spokeswoman for the US Department
of Defence, told agency.

The announcement suggested a slight easing of relations
after diplomatic efforts to revive stalled nuclear disarmament
talks.

The Pentagon said in a statement that the Bangkok
negotiations would only address the issue of recovering
remains from the Korean War, in which the United States led a
United Nations force fighting alongside South Korea.

The US Department of Defence says more than 7,900
Americans are missing from the conflict, with 5,500 of those
believed missing in North Korea.
Joint US-North Korean search teams, in 33 missions in the
North from 1996 to 2005, recovered the probable remains of 229
of them.

But cooperation broke down in 2005 when the United States
voiced concerns for the safety of its personnel as relations
soured over North Korea`s nuclear programme.

The US delegation, which will include representatives
from US Pacific Command and United Nations Command in Korea,
will be led by Robert Newberry, deputy assistant secretary of
defence for prisoner of war and missing personnel affairs, the
Pentagon said. It was unclear who was representing North
Korea.

PTI

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