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North, South Korea at Impasse on POW's, Kidnapped Civilians


North and South Korean officials have apparently made little progress toward reaching an agreement on the plight of South Korean prisoners of war and missing civilians South Korean officials believe are alive in the north.

Talks hosted by the Red Cross began Tuesday at the Mount Kumgang resort in North Korea.

The Yonhap news agency says that South Korean officials pushed for at least eight annual reunions for family members separated by the Korean War. The report said North Korea instead suggested holding one reunion each June.

Seoul says more than 500 prisoners and hundreds of kidnapped civilians are still alive in the North.

Pyongyang denies holding any war prisoners and says any South Korean citizens in its country defected voluntarily.

On a separate issue, South Korea agreed to donate 150,000 tons of fertilizer to the impoverished North.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.

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