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ROK to continue diplomatic efforts to release detainee in DPRK

THE South Korean government will continue its diplomatic efforts to release a South Korean worker detained in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) despite the current regional tensions, unification minister said today.

During an interview with Seoul's Yonhap News Agency, Unification Minister Hyun In-taek said that his government is seeking concrete measures for the detained worker's release.

The minister said Seoul is particularly putting efforts on working with China and other countries that have diplomatic missions in Pyongyang in order to get its message out to the North.

The DPRK has been keeping the South Korean worker in a joint industrial complex in its territory for 17 days, accusing him of publicly denouncing its political regime.

The diplomatic efforts come amid increased strain in the Korean Peninsula, after the UN Security Council on Monday adopted a non-binding presidential statement, saying the April 5 launch by the DPRK is "in contravention of Security Council Resolution 1718."

While the South Korean government welcomed and supported the statement, the DPRK Foreign Ministry refuted it and said the country would no longer participate in the six-party talks.

The South Korean government has also said it would announce its full membership in a US-led anti-proliferation drive, the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI), later this week, which would add to the tense situation, according to Yonhap.


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