S.Korean opposition to pursue closer ties with North

February 28, 2012 09:49

SEOUL - South Korea's main left wing opposition party, which polls say is headed for a victory in an April parliamentary election, vowed on Tuesday closer ties with North Korea and will end a sanctions regime imposed by the current conservative government.

The move comes amid saber-rattling by North Korea after it held talks with the United States last week on its nuclear program and food aid, the first under its new leader Kim Jong-un.

Incumbent President Lee Myung-bak put an end to a decade of aid to the North when he came to power in 2008, demanding the impoverished country abandon its nuclear ambitions, ending the "Sunshine Policy" of engagement by his two left-of-center predecessors.

"The Lee Myung-bak government's North Korea policy, the policy of just waiting for the North to change, has failed," the leader of the opposition Democratic United Party, Han Myeong-sook told a forum.

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