Seoul expressed regrets Thursday after Pyongyang refused its request to hold a working-level meeting to prepare for regular reunions of families separated by the Korean War (1950-53).
After the latest round of family meetings last month, the first one in more than three years, the South proposed Red Cross talks Wednesday, but the North rejected the idea the following day.
“We regret that North Korea did not accept our offer to discuss fundamental ways to deal with separated-family issues, such as periodic reunions,” a Ministry of Unification official said.
“To reunify families should be a top priority for the two Koreas without regard to any other topics, and it would also help improve South-North relations. We ask once again that the North accept our suggestion.”