South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun and North Korean top leader
Kim Jong-il continued their formal summit talks in Pyongyang on
The second round of talks began at around 2:30 PM (0530 GMT) at
the Paekhwawon State Guest House after Roh and Kim had respective
lunch recess, the Yonhap news agency reported.
Their first round of talks was held in the morning, beginning at
around 9:30 AM (0030 GMT), and lasted more than two hours.
During the first round of talks, they engaged in in-depth
discussions on measures to promote peace on the Korean Peninsula
and cross-border economic cooperation.
A South Korean official said in the afternoon that Kim Jong-il
proposed to extend Roh's visit by one day until Friday, and the
South Korean side will discuss the proposal and make a decision
The summit is the second of its kind since the peninsula was
divided more than half a century ago. Roh's predecessor, Kim
Dae-jung, traveled to North Korea for the first inter-Korean summit
in June 2000.
Earlier, a spokesman for Roh told reporters in Seoul that Kim
Jong-il and Roh were joined by South Korean Finance Minister Kwon
O-kyu, Unification Minister Lee Jae-joung, Director of the National
Intelligence Service Kim Man-bok and the DPRK's Director of the
United Front Department of the Workers' Party, Kim Yang Gon, at
Wednesday morning's meeting.
According to the spokesman, Roh and Kim will plant a tree at the
central arboretum of Pyongyang Wednesday afternoon to memorize the
second inter-Korean summit and watch a mass dance and musical
spectacle, the Arirang, later in the day. The performance features
synchronized maneuvers by thousands of dancers and giant flip-card
The two sides will hold working-group meetings Wednesday to
explore ways of strengthening bilateral cooperation in seven areas,
including economy, culture, religion and politics, said the
Growing economic cooperation has been a highlight of the warming
relations between the North and South since the first inter-Korean
summit. Joint projects have been launched in tourism, industry and
other fields, including tours of Mt. Kumgang and the industrial
zone in the North's border city of Kaesong.
The South Korean president is also scheduled to visit some
industrial sites Thursday before wrapping up his three-day visit,
which is likely to culminate with the issuance of a joint statement
or a declaration of peace Wednesday night or Thursday morning.
Roh, who traveled some 200 km overland to Pyongyang Tuesday and
was greeted by Kim at a festive ceremony upon arrival, met North
Korea's top legislator, Kim Yong Nam Tuesday afternoon.
(Xinhua News Agency October 3, 2007)