Koreas set to hold talks on railway cooperation

SEOUL, The two Koreas are set to discuss cooperation on connecting and modernizing railways running across their border Tuesday as part of efforts to follow up on their recent summit agreement.

The meeting will begin at 10 a.m. on the southern side of the truce village of Panmunjom, according to the unification ministry.

South Korea sent a three-member delegation led by Vice Transport Minister Kim Jeong-ryeol. His counterpart is Vice Railroad Minister Kim Yun-hyok.

"We will come back after discussing practically necessary matters for connecting and modernizing railways of South and North Korea," the South's chief delegate told reporters before leaving for the talks.

"There could be limits due to sanctions (on the North), but we still have many things to discuss and study that could be pursued after the sanctions are lifted," he added.

This marks the first time in about 10 years for the two Koreas to hold such talks on railway cooperation.

The meeting will focus on connecting and modernizing railways running across the inter-Korean border in the western and eastern parts of the Korean Peninsula.

In the western region, the two Koreas already have railways that link the South's Seoul to the North's northwestern border city of Sinuiju, but they need to be modernized for proper operation.

The two Koreas are also expected to discuss connecting their railways in the eastern region that run across the inter-Korean border, of which the Ganenung-Jejin section in the South remains severed.

The talks have been arranged to discuss follow-up measures on the agreement their leaders reached in the landmark summit on April 27. The two Koreas plan to hold a series of inter-Korean talks to boost cooperation on roads and forestry this week.

They recently agreed to hold reunions of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War in August, the first event of its kind since October 2015. They also promised to field join teams for some sports during the upcoming Asian Games.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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