Asia-Pacific

North Korea proposes new family reunions

South Korean Kim Tae-seok hugs his North Korean daughter Kim Mi-hye at a reunion in October 2009
Image caption Millions of families were separated by the war

North Korea has proposed to the South resuming later this month a programme of reunions for families separated by the Korean War, state media have said.

The North Korean Red Cross said the reunions could take place at the Mount Kumgang resort on the Chuseok harvest holiday, the KCNA news agency reported.

South Korea's government said it was considering the proposal "positively".

The reunions would be the first since the South accused the North of sinking one of its warships in March.

Pyongyang has denied firing a torpedo at the Cheonan, killing 46 sailors.

The two countries technically remain at war because their three-year conflict ended in an armistice in 1953 and no peace treaty was signed.

Millions of families were separated, and the only time contact between relatives has been allowed has been at the Red Cross-brokered reunions, last held in October 2009.

The North's proposal for a new round of reunions, which would start on 22 September, comes days after it accepted the offer of emergency aid from the South to help it cope with severe flooding.