SEOUL — South Korea today invited a North Korean vice defence minister to attend an international security conference in September in Seoul, despite cross-border military tensions, officials said.
The invitation was sent by South Korea's vice defence minister Baek Seung-joo to his North Korean counterpart through a military hotline, the South's defence ministry said.
The annual conference was launched in 2012 to enhance regional and global security co-operation, but North Korea has never been invited.
The previous sessions have covered such issues as global non-proliferation, cyber security and North Korea's nuclear and missile programmes.
South Korea has already sent invitations to 32 countries, including the United States, China and Japan.
There was no immediate response from Pyongyang.
The most recent attempt at dialogue – a meeting between North and South officials over a protracted wage dispute at the jointly operated Kaesong industrial zone – ended yesterday without any agreement. — AFP