Next round of South-North talks are set for Thursday

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Next round of South-North talks are set for Thursday

South and North Korea exchanged Tuesday a list of six officials who will take part in working-level talks on Thursday at the border village of Panmunjom. Three officials from each side will participate in the talks to discuss when, where and who will take part for senior-level talks to improve inter-Korean relations.

South Korea’s delegation for Thursday talks will be led by Kim Ki-woong, head of the Unification Ministry’s special office for inter-Korean talks, while the North’s delegation will be led by Hwang Chol, a senior official on the North’s Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland.

With the exchange of lists, the two Koreas finished preparations for the working-level talks, which will be the first official contact between the two sides after reunions of separated families last month, which were the first in more than a year.

If senior-level talks can be arranged during the Thursday talks, one of the top issues pushed by Seoul is holding additional reunions of separated families, as many separated relatives are in their 80s and older.

The working-level talks are part of inter-Korean efforts to deliver on a joint Aug. 25 agreement that called for holding reunions and improving inter-Korean ties through bolstering exchanges.

BY KANG JIN-KYU [kang.jinkyu@joongang.co.kr]

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