South Korea guarantees exemption from UN sanctions for the inter-Korean railway investigation

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SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea announced on Saturday that it had received sanctions from the British Security Council for a joint survey on the inter-Korean railway.

It is the first step towards the implementation of an inter-Korean agreement on the reconnection of railways and roads cut by the 1950-53 Korean War, as part of efforts to improve bilateral relations.

The deal was made during the October talks to follow the third summit of this year between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

The two Koreas had previously planned to conduct joint field studies on transport plans by the end of October, with the aim of organizing an innovative ceremony at the end of November and at the beginning of December.

But the plan was delayed amid stalemate talks between Washington and Pyongyang following an unprecedented summit in June in which the two sides agreed to work for nationalization and peace on the Korean peninsula.

Since then the negotiations have made little progress, with Pyongyang overwhelmed by Washington's insistence that international sanctions must remain until it renounces its nuclear weapons.

The United States has told its ally South Korea that it should not improve its ties with North Korea faster than Pyongyang does not adopt its nuclear weapons.

Lee Do-hoon, South Korea's nuclear negotiator, said at the beginning of this week that Washington is supporting the inter-Korean railway investigation, according to Yonhap News Agency.

Reporting of Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Stephen Coates

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