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South Korea, ASEAN Members Sign Free Trade Accord


South Korea and nine Southeast Asian nations have signed a free-trade deal, with Thailand as the lone critic to the agreement because of a dispute over rice.

Trade ministers from South Korea and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or ASEAN, signed the agreement Friday in Kuala Lumpur, just ahead of next week's Southeast Asian economic summit there.

Details of the agreement were not immediately available.

Bangkok declined to sign the deal because it objects to South Korea's insistence on keeping rice out of the trade deal. The two countries are expected to hold talks over the issue at a later date.

Some information for this report provided by AP and AFP.

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