North Korea says will reopen suspended hotline at DMZ

Asia Times Online reports: “South Korea welcomed a North Korean announcement that it would reopen a suspended communication hotline in the truce village of Panmunjeom in the De-militarized Zone between the two Koreas.

‘The restoration of the hotline is very significant,’ said Seoul’s Chief Presidential Press Secretary Yoon Young-chan, news agencies reported. ‘It creates an environment where communication will be possible at all times.’

The development comes two days after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un sent a conciliatory message to South Korea in his customary New Year’s speech, and one day after South Korea responded by proposing high-level talks between the two Koreas at Panmunjeom on Tuesday, Jan. 9, next week.

Seoul is hoping that a North Korean presence at the 2018 Winter Olympics, being held in Pyeongchang, South Korea, from Feb. 9-25, will provide a springboard for further inter-Korean communication and reconciliation, though Washington remains wary.

A North Korean official announced that the channel would be reopened in Panmunjeom at 3 p.m., Pyongyang time (06:30 GMT) today, on the orders of Kim, newswires reported…”

View Original Article