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Koreas end talks with no agreement Updated: 2014-07-18 06:27:49 KST

Koreas end talks with no agreement

Hours of talks led the Koreas nowhere on Thursday, as the meeting ended with an angry exit by North Korea.

"North Korea accused South Korea of trying to break down the talks on purpose and stormed out after unilaterally ending the meeting. Such action by the North is deeply regretful and we hope to see North Korea participate in the Incheon Asian Games."
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North Korea opened the meeting by saying it would send the largest-ever North Korean delegation to the Games -- 350 athletes and 350 cheerleaders.
Under Pyongyang's proposal, the athletes would travel by air and the cheering squad by car.
A North Korean ferry would also arrive in Incheon to be used as housing for the cheerleaders.
South Korea said it would accommodate the North Korean delegation just like any of the other teams participating in the sporting event, adding that further assistance could be provided.
But when South Korea asked for more details on its plans, North Korea walked away, questioning Seoul's motives.
Nevertheless, some experts say the Asian Games could become a platform for Pyongyang to show its sincerity.

"So if it works, I think they will be able to say, see, we meant what we said and let's try something else, let's have a second step. Maybe it will change perceptions in the South enough so that a second step will be easier."

Although no dates have been set for additional rounds of talks, the two sides are expected to meet again before the Incheon Asian Games begin on September 19th.
Hwang Sung-hee, Arirang News.
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