Wednesday, February 3, 1999 Published at 16:14 GMT
North Korea seeks to 'prevent danger of war'
This is the full text of the official North Korean news agency KCNA report of the initiative:
"With a view to preventing the imminent danger of war and bringing about a radical phase for national reunification in reliance upon the concerted efforts of the entire nation this year, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) proposed to the South Korean authorities to have inter-Korean high-level political talks.
"A joint meeting of the government, political parties and organisations of the DPRK today had discussions on the question of opening a new phase of national reunification with national independence and great unity and set forth this proposal.
"The meeting adopted three immediate measures reflecting the present tense situation and urgent demand of the whole nation -
'Outsiders are a stumbling block'
"It was said at the meeting that for reunification-orientated dialogue it is necessary to do away with anti-DPRK 'cooperation' with outsiders, a stumbling-block in the way of national reunification, discontinue joint military manoeuvres, abolish the National Security Law and ensure the reunification movement and free activities of pro-reunification patriotic organisations and figures in South Korea.
"The meeting proposed to the South Korean authorities to have inter-Korean high-level political talks in the second half of the year following the implementation of the above-mentioned measures in the first half of the year.
Three principles of reunification
"The proposed talks will focus on a step for the implementation of the inter-Korean agreement in which the three principles of national reunification are reaffirmed.
"Matters of co-operation and exchanges and relieving the pains of separated families and relatives and immediate questions arising in inter-Korean relations will be discussed as well."
A letter carrying the proposal to the South Korean authorities and political parties, organisations and figures at home and abroad was adopted at the meeting.
The meeting expressed expectation that the South Korean authorities and political parties, organisations and figures at home and abroad will show positive response to the patriotic call of the DPRK.