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Two Koreas remove landmines at tense border

Both sides undertook to carry out landmine removal work at the Joint Security Area (JSA) over a 20-day period, according to the South Korean defence ministry.

Published: 01st October 2018 01:21 PM  |   Last Updated: 01st October 2018 01:21 PM   |  A+A-

Mount Paekdu-Koreas

South Korean President Moon Jae-in, second from right, and his wife Kim Jung-sook, right, stand with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, second from left, and his wife Ri Sol Ju on the Mount Paektu in North Korea, Sept. 20, 2018. (Pyongyang Press Corps Pool

By AFP

SEOUL: The two Koreas on Monday started to remove landmines along a section of their heavily fortified border as part of a summit deal to ease military tensions, Seoul said.

The agreement between the nations -- which are technically still at war -- was reached at a meeting in Pyongyang last month between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his North Korean counterpart Kim Jong Un.

The summit was the third this year between the leaders, following a rapid thaw in relations.

Both sides undertook to carry out landmine removal work at the Joint Security Area (JSA) over a 20-day period, according to the South Korean defence ministry.

ALSO READ | South Korea's Moon Jae-in seeks nuclear agreement with Kim Jong Un at Korean summit

A spokesman said the operation had begun on both sides, though this was not confirmed by the North.  

The JSA, also known as the truce village of Panmunjom, is the only spot along the tense, 250-kilometre (155 miles) frontier where troops from the two countries stand face to face.

It is often used as a venue for talks between the two Koreas.  

More than 800,000 mines are believed to have been planted along the entire border during and after the 1950-53 war to defend against infiltration. 

Moon has advocated dialogue with the isolated North to nudge it toward denuclearisation.   

During his summit with Kim last month, the two leaders also agreed to remove some guard posts at the border by the end of the year and halt military drills on the border from November.



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