European Union raises prospect of new sanctions against NKorea

AP Explains Why is SKorea pushing for talks with NKorea

AP Explains Why is SKorea pushing for talks with NKorea

Official talks between the sides have not been held since December 2015.

The South Korean government made a rare formal overture to its counterpart in the North on Monday, proposing that the longstanding rivals open new military talks along their shared border.

U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., stated last Thursday the North Korean Enablers Accountability Act, would "ban any entity that does business with North Korea or its enablers...and to impose U.S. sanctions on all those participating on North Korean labor trafficking abuses".

He pointed to a 13.2 percent drop in imports from North Korea in the same period as an example of the pressure, adding that there have been sharp decreases every month since March. It is the first such offer under South Korea's new president, Moon Jae-in, who signaled his willingness to talk with Pyongyang during his campaign earlier this year.

Ship strikes suspected in deaths of right whales
Officials said Howlett's death is the first human fatality in the Atlantic Large Whale Disentanglement Network's history. Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Dominic LeBlanc says more needs to be done to protect right whales in the Gulf of St.

Others EU countries, including large members such as Britain, France and Germany, are wary of allowing North Korea to use talks to divide the global community.

Experts say an extended cut by China would threaten critical supplies of gasoline and diesel and force North Korea to find alternative sources of refined fuel products.

China insisted Thursday it was upholding UN sanctions on North Korea despite a jump in its trade with the nuclear-armed nation that comes amid growing USA calls for Beijing to rein in its neighbour.

The two Koreas have been divided since the 1950-53 Korean War ended with an armistice, not a peace treaty. "Ninety percent of the economy of North Korea depends on China".

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China has always been the North's main diplomatic defender but increasingly expresses frustration with leader Kim Jong Un's provocative behavior.

Those talks would be held on August 1, also in Panmunjom - that is, if Pyongyang accepts. But the North might set a precondition for the talks, such as a suspension of annual South Korean-U.S. military drills that it views as an invasion rehearsal, according to Koh Yu-hwan, a professor at Seoul's Dongguk University. About 28,500 American troops are stationed in South Korea.

North Korea will likely accept Moon's proposed talks on easing border animosities, as it's something that it's previously called for. Prospects for talks on family reunions are less good because North Korea has previously demanded that South Korea repatriate some North Korean defectors living in the South before any reunions take place, according to the analysts.

The reunions are a highly emotional issue because most applicants are in their 70s or 80s and are desperate to see their loved ones before they die.

Over 120 nations adopt first treaty banning nuclear weapons
Four others known or suspected to possess nuclear weapons - Pakistan, India, Israel, and North Korea - also refused to partake.

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