Two Koreas to make on-site inspection of N. Korean highway


Working-level officials from the two Koreas have agreed to begin an on-site inspection next month of a dilapidated North Korean highway that the countries earlier agreed to jointly repair, South Korea’s Unification Ministry said on Thursday.

The two-day working-level meeting involving four officials from each side started on Wednesday in the North Korean border town of Kaesong, home of an inter-Korean industrial complex. The repair of the highway, which runs between Kaesong and Pyongyang, the North’s capital, is part of an agreement reached at the inter-Korean prime ministerial talks held in Seoul from Nov. 14-16.

South Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-soo and North Korean Prime Minister Kim Yong-il ended their talks by sealing an eight-article accord, covering a variety of issues including economic projects, security, resource development, agriculture and social, cultural and sports exchanges.

“At the working-level contact, the two Koreas agreed to make a joint on-site inspection of the Pyongyang-Kaesong Highway from Dec. 11-27 in order to start its repair work from next year,” a ministry official said.

Some 20 officials from each side will participate in the highway inspection, and they will also jointly make a final report, the official said.

In conducting the inspection, the South will provide survey equipment and materials, while the North will provide various data and conveniences, the official said.

The two sides also agreed to hold the first meeting of the inter-Korean road cooperation committee in February to discuss issues based on the results of the joint inspection. Topics of discussion will include the scope and method of repair work and the joint use of the highway, according to the official.


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