On summit's anniversary, South Korea wants to resume talks with

Saturday, June 15, 2002

SEOUL, South Korea -- On the eve of the second anniversary of a historic summit accord, South Korea urged North Korea to resume talks and expressed regret for remarks that led to a cooling of relations.

In a letter sent to North Korea, South Korean Unification Minister Jeon Se-hyun said both sides must hold a round of economic talks that were canceled last month.

"South Korea and North Korea must revive the spirit of reconciliation and restore inter-Korean relations without delay," Jeon said. "To this end, the inter-Korean economic talks must open promptly."

The Koreas were divided in 1945 and share the world's most heavily armed border. Relations warmed after the June 2000 summit between South Korean President Kim Dae-jung and North Korean leader Kim Jong Il.

On the last day of the summit, the two leaders signed an agreement to pursue reconciliation and eventual reunification. But relations worsened again amid tension between North Korea and the United States, South Korea's ally.

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