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The connection of the European and Asian railways depends on the restoration of a single trans-Korean railway communication system
The connection of the European and Asian railways depends on the restoration of a single trans-Korean railway communication system and the development of relations between North and South Korea. Spokesman for the North Korean railways ministry Pak Chong Son stated this at an international conference in Seoul, the South Korean agency Renhap reported. North Korea attaches great importance to the project for the re-unification of railway communication between the south and the north of the Korean peninsula with an extension to the Russian Trans-Siberian railway (it is also called the Great Siberian Route. It extends from Moscow to Vladivostok, Russia's Pacific gate) and is striving for an early implementation of this project, Pak Chong Son told the participants in the seminar "Iron Silk Road", held as part of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). "The connection of Asian and European railways promotes the development and extension of economic cooperation in these regions and contributes to improving the living standards of the peoples inhabiting them", the agency cites the North Korean executive as saying. During the working talks between Russian, North and South Korean experts in Moscow in April, it was decided to continue the discussion of the modernization of railway track in the eastern DPRK. In connection with this, Pak Chong Son expressed confidence that there would be no hold-ups in the work to connect the railways of the two Korean states with the Trans-Siberian railroad. In his words, for the success of the project, the Joint Declaration of the South and North, signed on the results of the summit meeting of the leaders of the two Korean states in Pyongyang in June 2000, must be implemented. This document proclaims, in particular, the course for the development of active cooperation between North and South Korea in the interests of the development of the national economies. Taking part in the symposium "Iron Silk Road" are the delegations of the 21 member-states of the ASEM forum and representatives of the EU European Commission. The forum was convened on the initiative of the governments of South Korea, Finland, Vietnam, China, Malaysia, France and the Asia-Europe Fund (ASEF). A ceremony of a symbolic connection of the railways of North and South Korea was held in the demilitarized zone in June 2003.
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