Koreas to hold general-level military talks

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Seoul : South Korea and North Korea have agreed to hold general-level military talks next week, Seoul's Defence Ministry said on Friday.

North Korea had proposed the talks, which South Korea accepted, according to the Defence Ministry.

The general-level military dialogue would be held on July 31 at the Peace House, a South Korean building at the border village of Panmunjom, Xinhua news agency reported.

The South Korean delegation would be led by Major General Kim Do-gyun who will talk with his North Korean counterpart Lt. General An Ik-san, leading a five-member delegation.

Issues expected to be discussed include the disarmament of the Joint Security Area (JSA) inside the Panmunjom and the withdrawal of troops and equipment from guard posts inside the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) which separates the two Koreas.

After their first summit on April 27 in Panmunjom, South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un agreed to stop all hostile acts near the border area to reduce military tensions.

Other issues on the agenda could be the joint excavation inside the DMZ of the remains of soldiers killed in the 1950-53 Korean War.

South Korea could raise the issue for turning the Northern Limit Line (NLL) -- a de-facto inter-Korean sea border -- into a maritime peace zone.

North Korea has not acknowledged the NLL as a sea border as it was unilaterally drawn by the US-led UN Command after the Korean War.

On June 14, the two Koreas held the first general-grade military talks in over a decade, agreeing to restore military hotlines along the eastern and western regions completely.