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Seoul Rejects Pyongyang's Offer of Military Talks, Demands Denuclearization

© Sputnik / Aleksandr Yurev / Go to the photo bankSeoul sights
Seoul sights - Sputnik International
The South Korean Defense Ministry rejected on Friday a proposal by the North to hold inter-Korean military talks, instead demanding real steps toward denuclearization from Pyongyang.

TOKYO (Sputnik) — Earlier in the day, Pyongyang urged Seoul to accept its offer to hold military talks and called for joint steps to carry out "practical" measures for national unity, citing the need to ease tensions on the Korean peninsula.

"Before offering military talks between the North and the South, one must effectively demonstrate a real turn toward denuclearization," the South Korean Defense Ministry said, as quoted by Yonhap News Agency.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un guides on the spot the underwater test-fire of strategic submarine ballistic missile in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang on April 24, 2016 - Sputnik International
South Korean Unification Ministry Calls on Pyongyang to Denuclearize
Since 1953, Seoul and Pyongyang have been legally at war following the signing of an armistice, and not a peace treaty, at the end of the 1950-1953 Korean War. Relations between the two nations fluctuate sporadically, in particular, after 2005, when North Korea declared itself a nuclear power, and conducted several nuclear weapon tests.

Their relations deteriorated significantly in January when Pyongyang successfully carried out a hydrogen bomb test.

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