NORTH and South Korea will be able to talk about improving their cold war relations when officials meet again next month, South Korean President Kim Young Sam said during a visit to the United States this week.
Speaking to Korean residents in San Francisco, Mr. Kim said North Korea ''is in extremely difficult situations'' economically and needs outside help, the Dong-A Ilbo newspaper in Seoul quoted Kim as saying.
In the first meaningful inter-Korea economic deal ever, South Korea is shipping 150,000 tons of free rice to help ease grave food shortages in the reclusive communist country.
The North is also seeking 1 million tons of food aid from the US, according to South Korean Unification Minister Rha Woong Bae. Speaking to business leaders July 23, he said the US may partially meet the North's request. Japan is already sending 300,000 tons of rice, half of it free.
South Korea's food aid was agreed on at secretive talks in Beijing in June. Further meetings ended without any agreements. Both sides are scheduled to meet again in Beijing Aug. 10.