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North and South Korea reach agreement to defuse tensions

North and South Korea have reached an agreement following two days of talks to end hostilities between the two sides.

Under the accord, North Korea expressed regret over a landmine incident that wounded two South Korean soldiers earlier this month. South Korea, in return, agreed to stop anti-North propaganda broadcasts along the border from midday tomorrow.

Follow up talks are planned aimed at improving relations between the two countries. Credit: The South Korean Unification Ministry via AP

In a joint statement, the two sides agreed to hold follow-up talks aimed at improving ties. North Korea has ended the "quasi-state of war" it had declared.

Last week an exchange of artillery fire across the border had pushed the Korean peninsula to the brink of armed conflict.

"It is very meaningful that from this meeting North Korea apologised for the landmine provocation and promised to work to prevent the recurrence of such events and ease tensions." Kim Kwan-jin, South Korea's national security adviser said in a televised statement.

S. Korea 'will continue broadcasts unless North apologises'

South Korea's anti-North propaganda broadcasts will continue to be blared across the border unless Pyongyang apologises, the country's president has said.

Park Geun-hye said the South deserved an apology after two South Korean soldiers were wounded by landmines along the border.

South Korea had previously dismantled its propaganda loudspeaker in 2004 Credit: Reuters

A statement released by her office reveals Park reportedly told her top aides:

We need a clear apology and measures to prevent a recurrence of these provocations and tense situations.

Otherwise, this government will take appropriate steps and continue loudspeaker broadcasts.

– President Park Geun-hye

It comes amid lengthy inter-Korean talks aimed at easing tensions that have brought the peninsula to the brink of armed conflict.

In 2004, North and South Korea agreed to stop blaring propaganda at one another across the border, but such broadcasts have resumed in recent days as relations between the two countries deteriorate.

North and South Korea officials continue talks

Talks between North and South Korea are continuing Credit: Reuters

Senior aides to the leaders of North and South Korea are continuing talks aimed at easing tensions that have brought the peninsula to the brink of armed conflict.

The meeting at the Panmunjom truce village began on Saturday evening, shortly after North Korea's deadline for loudspeaker propaganda broadcasts along the border to stop or face military action.

The envoys, shown on TV exchanging handshakes at the start of their meeting, are discussing ways to resolve tensions and improve ties, South Korean officials said.

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