Two Koreas to hold second round of high-level talks

Head of the North Korean high-level delegation Won Tong Yon (third from left) shakes hands with his South Korean counterpart Kim Kyou-hyun (second from right) during their talks at the truce village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) on Feb
Head of the North Korean high-level delegation Won Tong Yon (third from left) shakes hands with his South Korean counterpart Kim Kyou-hyun (second from right) during their talks at the truce village of Panmunjom in the Demilitarised Zone (DMZ) on Feb 12, 2014. North and South Korea will hold a second round of high-level talks on Friday, the South's Unification Ministry said, as they seek to resolve a row over looming South Korea-US military drills. -- PHOTO: AFP

SEOUL (AFP) - North and South Korea will hold a second round of high-level talks on Friday, the South's Unification Ministry said, as they seek to resolve a row over looming South Korea-US military drills.

The meeting will again be held at the border truce village of Panmunjom with the same vice minister-level delegations that participated in a first round of talks on Wednesday.

They mark the highest-level sit-down between the two rivals since 2007.

Wednesday's discussions ran late into the night, but ended without any tangible agreement or joint statement.

Although the talks have no fixed agenda, the South is focused on ensuring that a planned reunion later this month for family members separated by the 1950-53 Korean War goes ahead as scheduled.

The North is insisting that the start of South Korea's annual military exercises with the United States, which overlaps with the reunion event, be postponed.

Seoul has refused, arguing that the two issues cannot be linked.

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