Thu, 28 Oct 2021

PYONGYANG, Sept. 24 (Xinhua) -- Pyongyang is willing to hold discussions on improving bilateral ties if South Korea ends its policy of hostility, a senior official of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) said on Friday.

"We have willingness to keep our close contacts with the South again and have constructive discussion with it about the restoration and development of bilateral relations" if Seoul ceases its hostile policies toward Pyongyang, Kim Yo Jong, vice department director of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, said in a statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency.

Kim made the remarks in response to a proposal by South Korean President Moon Jae-in a few days ago. During a speech at the 76th United Nations General Assembly, Moon called for a political declaration to terminate the 1950-53 war on the Korean Peninsula.

Kim, who is also the younger sister of Kim Jong Un, the DPRK's top leader, said the proposal is "an interesting and an admirable idea," which means "a physical end to the unstable state of ceasefire" and to "withdraw hostility toward the opposite party."

Concern remains whether the time is ripe to officially announce the end to the war.

"Now double-dealing standards, prejudice and hostile policies toward the DPRK and speeches and acts antagonizing us persist," she said. "Under such situation, it does not make any sense to declare the end of the war."

She said for the termination of the war to be declared, "respect for each other should be maintained and prejudiced viewpoint, inveterate hostile policy and unequal double standards must be removed first."

Only then would it be possible to sit face to face and discuss the future of the Korean Peninsula, Kim said.

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