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Mar 09,2009
Bosworth: N. Korea move regrettable
by UPI

SEOUL - A North Korean decision to cut off a main military communications channel to Seoul is regrettable, a U.S. enovy said Monday.

U.S. Special Representative for North Korea Policy Stephen Bosworth told reporters in Seoul after a meeting with President Lee Myung-bak Pyongyang's move won't help to reduce tensions on the Korean peninsula, the South Korean news agency Yonhap reported.

"Obviously, this is something that we regret," Bosworth said. "We think that improved communications between South and North Korea must in the longer run be a key component of the six-party effort to reduce tension and to bring about the denuclearization of the peninsula."

The North pulled the plug on its military communication line earlier Monday, stranding 80 South Korean workers at an inter-Korean joint industrial complex in the North Korean border town of Kaesong who are required to use the line to acquire Pyongyang's permission to come and go, Yonhap said.

Bosworth also reaffirmed that Washington will push for continued six-party talks with South Korea, China, Russia and Japan rather than putting a higher priority on direct negotiations with Pyongyang, the news agency said.

© 2009 United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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