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Summary of inter-Korean news this week

All News 16:00 April 09, 2021

SEOUL, April 9 (Yonhap) -- The following is a summary of inter-Korean news this week.

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S. Korea to conduct survey on Korean War-separated families

SEOUL, April 5 (Yonhap) -- The unification ministry said Monday that it will conduct a survey of families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War to figure out the exact number of survivors and demand for reunions with their relatives in North Korea.

The survey will be carried out from Tuesday until the end of October mostly on around 48,000 people who have applied for reunions with their long-lost family members in the North, according to the ministry.

South Korea has conducted the survey every five years since 2011 to see if such people are still alive and want reunions. This year's marked the third of its kind.

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N. Korean firm loses suit against S. Korean companies in disputes over export payment

SEOUL, April 6 (Yonhap) -- A North Korean firm on Tuesday lost a lawsuit claiming millions of dollars for metal it supplied to South Korean companies in 2010, in a rare legal battle between businesses from the two Koreas.

In a ruling against the North Korean National Economic Cooperation Federation, its member company and their South Korean deputy, the Seoul Central District Court said that four South Korean firms need not pay the plaintiffs about 5.3 billion won (US$4.7 million) for the zinc they imported from North Korea over a decade ago.

This marks the first known case of a North Korean company filing a suit with a South Korean court.

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Unification ministry vows efforts to resume inter-Korean talks despite N.K.'s decision to skip Tokyo Olympics

SEOUL, April 7 (Yonhap) -- The unification ministry vowed efforts to resume inter-Korean talks despite North Korea's decision not to participate in the Tokyo Olympics, a high-level official said Wednesday.

On Tuesday, North Korea said it will not take part in the upcoming Tokyo Summer Olympics to protect its athletes from the coronavirus pandemic, dashing South Korea's hopes to use the games to kick-start the stalled peace process with Pyongyang.

"There is still time left until July. We will continue efforts to revive inter-Korean relations through various opportunities while keeping an eye on the situation," the ministry official told reporters on condition of anonymity.

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S. Korea to provide 2.3 bln won to repair bridge near DMZ

SEOUL, April 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korea decided Thursday to spend 2.3 billion won (US$2.1 million) of inter-Korean cooperation funds to repair a flood-damaged bridge near the border with North Korea, the unification ministry said.

A civilian-government committee on inter-Korean exchanges approved the decision to use the funds to rebuild the "Bima Bridge," a sole path toward the Arrowhead Ridge on the border with North Korea in Cheorwon, some 90 kilometers northeast of Seoul.

The bridge was destroyed by heavy downpours last year.
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