North Korea suggests joint celebrations with South Korea

North Korea proposed holding joint celebrations with South Korea this year to mark key anniversaries despite the chilled relations between the sides after the communist nation's nuclear test, a report said Tuesday.

North Korea hopes to celebrate the seventh anniversary of the first-ever summit between the two Koreas' leaders in Pyongyang in June with the South, "prompted by the desire to promote national reconciliation and unity," the North's official Korean Central News Agency reported.

The North also suggested the two countries celebrate in South Korea the 62nd anniversary in August of their liberation from Japanese colonial rule that stretched from 1910-45, according to the report.

The two Koreas have jointly celebrated the two key anniversaries as part of reconciliation efforts launched since the breakthrough summit in 2000.

However, their ties have suffered setbacks over the North's missile launches in July and its first-ever nuclear test in October, the AP says.

Last year, the North called off the planned celebration of Liberation Day, citing flood damage after strong storms swept the country.

The two Koreas remain technically at war because the 1950-53 Korean War ended in a cease-fire, not a peace treaty.

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