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South and North Korean families say tearful goodbyes after short reunions.

Saturday, February 22, 2014 - 00:59

Feb. 22 - South and North Korean families torn apart by the Korean War say tearful goodbyes to each other after a three-day reunion in the North. Rough Cut. (No Reporter Narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Elderly South Koreans said tearful goodbyes to their relatives in North Korea on Saturday (February 22) after their short reunions, the first time they have seen each other since they were separated by the 1950-53 Korean War. On Thursday (February 20), 82 elderly South Koreans selected for the trip, accompanied by 58 family members to help them, crossed the border in the North for the first round of rare reunions at the Mount Kumgang resort, just inside the North Korean territory. Two of them had to return to the South in the middle of the reunions due to urgent health problems. After the emotional reunions the South Koreans, who were not able to make any promises or arrangements to return, had to cross back over the border. As the buses carrying them back to the South were about to leave, many of their North Korean relatives were crying as they waved to those on board the buses. Another round of reunions will run from Sunday (February 23) to Tuesday (February 25) for 88 North Koreans who will meet their 361 South Korean relatives. It will also be held in North Korea. The reunions used to be held more frequently but have not taken place for three years as tensions between the two Koreas spiralled higher after the South said the North sank one of its naval vessels in 2010. In later months, the North shelled a South Korean island and Pyongyang threatened nuclear attacks last year. Last September, the North abruptly announced an indefinite postponement of reunions that had been scheduled shortly after the Korean Thanksgiving holidays. On February 14, North and South Korea agreed to proceed with reunions of families separated by the Korean War despite an earlier North Korean demand that they could only go ahead if the South postponed military exercises with the United States.

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South and North Korean families say tearful goodbyes after short reunions.

Saturday, February 22, 2014 - 00:59