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SKorea Dismisses NKorea’s Calls for Improved Ties

3 January 2014

South Korea on Friday dismissed North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s calls for improved ties and urged his government to take nuclear disarmament steps first. Kim made the overture in his New Year’s Day speech on Wednesday that included typical rhetoric against Seoul and Washington and a warning of a possible nuclear war. South Korean Unification Ministry spokesman Kim Eui-do told reporters that North Korea must first make “sincere” efforts for nuclear disarmament if it wants to improve strained ties with Seoul. He said Seoul was doubtful about Pyongyang’s overture because the country made a similar offer in a New Years’ Day message last year but quickly followed that with a nuclear test.—AP