South Korea: Today, North Korea sent a notice to South Korea urging a response the North's proposal to hold working-level talks on the resumption of Mount Kumgang tours. The inquiry was sent through the communication line at the truce village of Panmunjom," the Ministry of Unification said in a statement.
In response, the government in Seoul sent the message that it preferred to hold such talks at Mount Kumgang on 25 September, rather than this Thursday, 22 August, which the North Koreans first proposed.
Comment: South Korea has segregated talks on resuming family reunions from talks about resuming tours to Mount Kumgang. South Korean officials judge them to be sufficiently different as to warrant separate working-level arrangements.
The talks on family reunions will occur in Panmunjom this month. The reunions will resume at the resort facilities of Mount Kumgang during the Chusok (Harvest Moon) celebrations from 18 to 20 September. Chusok is officially 19 September 2013.
Separately and subsequently, the 25 September talks on resuming tours to Mount Kumgang will take place at the Mount Kumgang resort.
North Korea: Forthe record. North Korea on Tuesday criticized South Korean-US military drills with milder-than-usual language. The North has ordered no increase in national readiness or military alert.
US-Pakistan: The US Treasury on Tuesday set economic sanctions on a Pakistan Islamic school it branded a 'terrorist training center' supporting al-Qaida and the Taliban. The Treasury said the Ganj madrassah in Peshawar was being used as a training and recruiting base by two militant groups, as well as the radical Lashkar-e-Taiba blamed for the November 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed 166 people.
Special comment: NightWatch has observed during the last 12 years that anti-terrorist initiatives have seldom targeted recruitment and indoctrination of youth in the processes of terrorism. The main thrust has been on decapitation, which is never a permanent solution to terrorism, and on total destruction of terrorist groups which is always impossible.
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