02/01/2011, 00.00
KOREA
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Yes to military talks between the Koreas, but the UN discovers a secret reactor

Pyongyang accepts Seoul proposal, seeking to advance the date to February 8th. Meanwhile, a UN report denounces the unofficial presence of yet another secret nuclear facility in North Korean territory.

Seoul (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The military talks between the two Koreas have been brought forward to 8th February. The news is however, accompanied by the UN report of the presence of a secret nuclear facility in the North. South Korean Yonap news agency reports that this morning North Korea sent a note to the South’s Ministry of Defence proposing to move the date of the meeting, previously scheduled for the 11. to the 8.  It will be the first attempt at dialogue between the two countries, after months of tensions which exploded on November 23 last year, when the North bombed a South Korean island.

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak first spoke of reconciliation with the North, in his traditional New Year speech held on January 3 last. Lee said that everyone had to do their utmost to defuse tensions between the two sides, including the resumption of economic ties.

Meanwhile, a UN report published on Bloomberg declares the existence of a secret nuclear facility in North Korea, in the Yongbyon facility. The report, not yet published, is based on the testimonies of U.S. scientist Siegfried Hecker, who visited the site in November last year. Diplomats claim Pyongyang is receiving technical assistance from foreign scientists, and it is likely that the equipment in the Yongbyon reactor were previously found in other places.

The report should be made official during the week.

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