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Cabinet approves plan to expand ministry bureau in charge of inter-Korean exchanges

All Headlines 14:30 February 04, 2020

SEOUL, Feb. 4 (Yonhap) -- The Cabinet on Tuesday approved the unification ministry's plan to expand its bureau in charge of cross-border exchanges and cooperation, the ministry said.

The reorganization plan, the largest one carried out at the ministry in a decade, will take effect next Tuesday following related procedures, the ministry said.

Under the restructuring, the ministry will establish a new division that will take charge of border cooperation issues, such as Seoul's push to turn the Demilitarized Zone, which bisects the two Koreas, into a global peace zone.

The move comes at a time when inter-Korean relations remain stalled amid scant progress in denuclearization negotiations between the United States and North Korea.

North Korea has remained unresponsive to Seoul's repeated offers for talks, blaming the South for dragging its feet in pushing for inter-Korean cooperation projects for fear of violating sanctions.

"There are many areas that need preparations internally in case the consultations with the North resume," a ministry official said. "The shake-up is part of our efforts to proactively respond to the unpredictability of the inter-Korean relations and lead the peace process on the Korean Peninsula."

Cabinet approves plan to expand ministry bureau in charge of inter-Korean exchanges - 1

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