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Koreas Hold Fresh Talks on Stalled Joint Factory

North and South Korea are holding fresh talks aimed at reopening a joint factory complex that has been closed for nearly three months.

South Korea says the talks began early Wednesday just across the North's border at Kaesong, where the complex is located.

Three previous rounds of working-level talks have yielded little progress on the project, an important symbol of inter-Korean cooperation.

Pyongyang has so far rejected Seoul's demands for assurances the facility will not be closed unilaterally during times of worsened relations.

The North removed its workers from Kaesong in April, blaming unspecified "hostile action" by the South, which responded by pulling its workers.

The North was upset with expanded U.N. sanctions against its February nuclear test. It also was angry with annual U.S.-South Korea military drills.



Although work at Kaesong has been suspended before during times of heightened tensions, it had never been shut down completely since it was established in 2004.

The complex, which relies on South Korean know-how and cheap North Korean labor, was a key source of hard currency for the North's troubled economy.

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