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    South Korean President Moon Jae-in speaks with Chinese President Xi Jinping by telephone at the Presidential Blue House in Seoul, South Korea in this handout picture provided by the Presidential Blue House and released by Yonhap on May 11, 2017

    South Korea Approves First Civilian Contact With North Under New President

    © REUTERS / Blue House/Yonhap
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    South Korea’s unification ministry approved on Friday the first civilian exchange with the North after Moon Jae-in became president this month, local media reported.

    TOKYO (Sputnik) —The Korean Sharing Movement, a nonprofit that provides relief aid to North Korean children, has been allowed to proceed with its projects by contacting Pyongyang, the Yonhap news agency quoted government officials as saying.

    The two states have been technically at war since 1953 and any trip across the border requires consent of authorities in both Seoul and Pyongyang, the outlet said.

    The unification ministry said Thursday it was looking into 19 requests by South Korean non-governmental organizations to take part in inter-Korean exchanges. It promised to take care not to breach international sanctions against the reclusive state.

    This comes after President Moon vowed in his inauguration address on May 10 to reengage with the North and even consider travelling to Pyongyang in the right circumstances in order to bring peace to the divided peninsula.

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    Tags:
    contacts, civilians, Moon Jae-in, Democratic Republic of North Korea (DPRK), South Korea
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