January 9, 2018 / 6:34 PM / in a year

U.N. chief welcomes North and South Korean agreement to ease tensions

U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres speaks during the ceremony marking the closure of the U.N. tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague, Netherlands December 21, 2017. REUTERS/Toussaint Kluiters/United Photos

(Reuters) - U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday welcomed progress in talks between North and South Korea to ease military tensions and the North Korean decision to send a delegation to next month’s Pyeongchang Winter Olympics in South Korea, his spokesman said.

Guterres welcomed “the agreement to work to ease military tensions, hold military-to-military talks, and reopen the inter-Korean military hotline,” his spokesman, Stéphane Dujarric, said in a statement.

“The re-establishment and strengthening of such channels is critical to lowering the risk of miscalculation or misunderstanding and to reduce tensions in the region,” the statement added.

Reporting by Mohammad Zargham in Washington; Editing by James Dalgleish

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