North Korea, South Korea sign deal on Kaesong committee

Last Updated: Thursday, August 29, 2013 - 13:49

Seoul: The two Koreas formally signed an agreement on Thursday forming a joint committee that will meet next week and is tasked with re-opening and running a joint industrial park shut down in April.

The initial challenge facing the 12-member committee is hammering out a schedule that will lead to the resumption of operations at the Kaesong complex.

The South`s Unification Ministry, which handles inter-Korean affairs, said the first meeting would take place Monday in Kaesong, 10 kilometres inside the North Korean border.

The complex was established in 2004 as a rare symbol of North-South reconciliation and survived a series of crises on the Korean peninsula that saw other joint projects collapse.

But operations were suspended in April when the North withdrew all its 53,000 workers at a time of heightened military tensions.
Pyongyang said its hand had been forced by "provocative" South Korea-US joint military exercises.
The two Koreas agreed earlier this month to create the joint committee in an effort to get the complex, a valuable source of hard currency for the North, up and running again.
AFP




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