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North Korea says will attend Olympics in rival South

– North Korea said it was willing to send athletes and a high-level delegation to the forthcoming Winter Olympics in the South on Tuesday as the rivals held their first official talks in more than two years after high tensions over Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons programme.

Seoul urged that reunions of families divided by the 1950-53 Korean War — one of the most emotive legacies of the conflict — be held at the same time as the Games.

And the two sides agreed to restore a military hotline closed since February 2016 to improve communications between their armed forces, the South’s vice unification minister Chun Hae-Sung said.

The talks were held in Panmunjom, the truce village in the Demilitarized Zone that splits the peninsula, with the North’s group walking over the Military Demarcation Line to the Peace House venue on the southern side — just yards from where a defector ran across in a hail of bullets two months ago.

“The North side proposed dispatching a high-level delegation, a National Olympic Committee delegation, athletes, supporters, art performers, observers, a taekwondo demonstration team and journalists” to the Games, Chun told reporters.

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