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South Korea has no plans to provide aid to North in connection with reunions

Updated: 2014-02-18 06:50:55 (KST)
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South Korea's Unification Ministry said Monday the government has no immediate plans to provide food or fertilizer aid to North Korea in connection with an upcoming round of reunions for families separated since the Korean War.
Unification Ministry spokesperson Kim Eui-do made the statement Monday, three days before the first reunions for the families in more than three years.


"Currently, the government is not considering rice and fertilizer aid for North Korea in connection with the family reunions."

Kim did not rule out the possibility of the South's sending aid, but said that will depend on the state of inter-Korean relations in the coming months.
Meanwhile, a 15-member delegation from South Korea comprising unification ministry officials and members of the Red Cross arrived at the reunion venue on Mount Kumgang in the North over the weekend to fine-tune the details before the reunions start on Thursday.
For the organizers, the weather is the main concern.
Although snowplows have removed most of the two meters of snow that fell at the reunion site last week, the ministry said it began snowing again at Mount Kumgang on Monday.
To ensure the reunion site is accessible, the unification ministry has deployed 15 heavy-duty snow removal vehicles to the site.
Millions of Koreans were separated by the Korean War more than six decades ago and some 70-thousand South Koreans are waiting to see their loved ones.
Eighty-three of them will have an opportunity to reunite with relatives living in the North on the first round of the six-day event.
On the second round, 88 North Koreans will reunite with family members from the South.
The reunions are a symbolic step forward in inter-Korean relations, as this is the first such event in over three years.
The North cancelled a round of family reunions last September, just days before the event was scheduled to begin.
Connie Kim, Arirang News.


Reporter : connie1223@arirang.co.kr

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