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Article updated: 6/15/2013 9:09 PM

North Korea proposes talks with Washington

A woman rests under an umbrella while a man walks past her Saturday near a statue known as the Monument to the Three Charters for National Reunification, which symbolizes the hope for eventual reunification of the two Koreas, in Pyongyang, North Korea. In past years, the monument built over the road leading to South Korea has been the site of celebrations marking a joint reconciliation declaration signed by the two Koreas on June 15, 2000. This year’s events were canceled after high-level talks between the Seoul and Pyongyang governments, the first in six years, were called off earlier in the week.

A woman rests under an umbrella while a man walks past her Saturday near a statue known as the Monument to the Three Charters for National Reunification, which symbolizes the hope for eventual reunification of the two Koreas, in Pyongyang, North Korea. In past years, the monument built over the road leading to South Korea has been the site of celebrations marking a joint reconciliation declaration signed by the two Koreas on June 15, 2000. This year's events were canceled after high-level talks between the Seoul and Pyongyang governments, the first in six years, were called off earlier in the week.

 

Associated Press

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By Associated Press

PYONGYANG, North Korea -- North Korea's top government body is proposing high-level nuclear and security talks with the United States days after a planned meeting with rival South Korea collapsed.

The National Defense Commission said Sunday that the talks should ease tensions and achieve peace and security on the Korean Peninsula.

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North Korea has issued a series of angry statements since U.N. sanctions were imposed after a December rocket launch and a February nuclear test. There have been threats of nuclear war by the North, followed by South Korean vows of counterstrikes.

Outside analysts say North Korea often expresses interest in talks after raising tension with provocative behavior in order to win outside concessions.

Washington's top worry is North Korea's nuclear weapons program. Pyongyang is estimated to have a handful of crude nuclear devices.

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