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Korean Defense Ministers Meet in Pyongyang

Defense ministers from North and South Korea are holding a rare round of talks in the North Korean capital.

After arriving in Pyongyang Tuesday, South Korean Defense Minister Kim Jang-soo said he hoped the visit would help reduce tensions and bring peace to the Korean peninsula.

He will hold three days of talks with his North Korean counterpart, Kim Il Chol. The two will discuss economic cooperation and confidence-building measures, including the establishment of a joint fishing zone in the West Sea.

The two Koreas' defense ministers last met in 2000 in what was the first such meeting since the countries split over half a century ago.

During a summit last month, South Korea's President Roh Moo-hyun and North Korea's Kim Jong Il signed an accord calling for a peace treaty to replace the armistice that ended the Korean War.

North and South Korea agreed to the fishing zone during the landmark talks between the presidents last month in Pyongyang.

The initiative is designed to reduce tensions along a disputed sea border where the countries' navies clashed in 1999 and 2002.

Pyongyang rejects the so-called Northern Line Limit, the boundary designated by the U.S.-led United Nations command at the end of the 1950-53 Korean War.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.