SKorea offers to meet North for talks next week

South Korea quickly follows up on NKorean talks offer, proposes meeting next week in Seoul

Associated Press
Koreas agree to hold talks on reopening complex
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Visitors look at products made at Kaesong industrial complex in North Korea, displayed at the unification observation post in Paju near the border village of Panmunjom, that has separated the two Koreas since the Korean War, in Paju, South Korea, Thursday, June 6, 2013. North and South Korea agreed Thursday to hold talks on reopening a jointly run factory complex and possibly other issues, a hopeful sign for ending deteriorating relations that comes just as China and the U.S. prepare for a summit where the North is expected to be a key topic. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) -- South Korean officials have offered to meet their North Korean counterparts next week in Seoul to talk about restoring a jointly run factory park and other projects.

Thursday's announcement came hours after North Korea said it was open to talks. It said Seoul could set the time and venue, and South Korean Unification Minister Ryoo Kihl-jae proposed that the talks occur June 12 in Seoul.

The talks will be the Koreas' first government-level negotiations since South Korean President Park Geun-hye took office in February.

Pyongyang had said it was willing to hold talks on reopening the Kaesong factory park, which was run with North Korean workers and South Korean managers. It's also willing to talk about resuming reunions of families separated by war, and resuming South Korean tours to a mountain resort.

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