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Korean Industrial Site Again Focus as Talks Falter

Bilateral discussions between North and South Korea on resuming joint operations at the Kaesong industrial complex near their shared border are going badly after six rounds of talks, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

The lead delegate for the North Korean side, Park Chol Su, warned South Korean news media that North Korean troops could be sent to Kaesong if the negotiations fall apart.

Elsewhere, U.S. and South Korean officials on Wednesday were scheduled to hold talks on renegotiating the amount of money the South pays to finance the upkeep of the roughly 28,500 U.S. military personnel stationed on the Korean Peninsula, the Korea Herald reported.

Presently, the South pays roughly 42 percent of the cost, which came to about $778 million for 2013. Washington is understood to want that amount increased to 50 percent for 2014. The U.S. government argues that its own fiscal constraints, plus Seoul's robust economy, justify the change.

Meanwhile, a massive military parade planned by North Korea for Saturday will be closely watched by the international community in case any of the nation's new ballistic missiles are rolled out, as is anticipated, Agence France-Presse reported.

It was previously reported that satellites had detected mobile intermediate-range Musudan missiles being readied not far from the parade staging area in Pyongyang.

The Musudan was first spotted at a parade several years ago. Its capabilities are uncertain in the West, as it is not known to have ever been flight tested. The mysterious road-mobile KN-08 ICBM was seen for the first time at a parade last spring. That weapon has also never been test-launched and international missile specialists have observed that the versions seen on display might be mere mock-ups.

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Country Profile

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South Korea

This article provides an overview of South Korea’s historical and current policies relating to nuclear, chemical, biological and missile proliferation.

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