Friday, June 7, 2013

Korean Homework: Part Five

"North Korea proposes talks with South." Al Jazeera. 6 June 2013. Web. 7 June 2013. Click Here for Article Link.

Official lines of communication between the two Korean governments were shut off in April 2013 following several weeks of behavior by the North which appeared aggressive to the South and the United States.  Now after more than a month of cooling down (and a month of its 50,000 workers from the Kaesong Industrial Zone joint economic venture being out of work) the North is making overtures to resume communication.  Such talks appear to have been scheduled in Seoul for June 12th.  The North has indicated, in addition to a resumption of the joint ventures in Kaesong, that reopening of tours to the Mt. Kumgang resort and resumption of visits between families separated by the divide in the 1950s are topics which are open for discussion.

When the noise coming from North Korea first began and friends who are aware of my upcoming travels began asking if I was still going and if it would be safe I came to a conclusion that much of the "noise" was posturing on the part of the North or, more specifically, on the part of Kim Jong-Un.  Some of my reading from the book which I've been summarizing in other postings here tend to reinforce this thought.  I am encouraged by the upcoming talks and the fact that the noise had died down several weeks ago.  I am excited about my upcoming trip!!  It would be awesome to get a chance to see the Kaesong zone and even the Mt. Kumgang resort area but I'm sure those are not widely open for tours by non-Koreans.  As of now the trip into the DMZ is still a go.

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