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Learning English - Words in the News
 
03 October, 2007 - Published 13:44 GMT
 
Korea leaders in historic talks
 
Kim Jong-il (right) welcomes Roh Moo-hyun

The leaders of North and South Korea have begun formal talks on the second day of their historic summit in Pyongyang. However, correspondents say expectations for any lasting progress between the two countries are modest. This report from John Sudworth:

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The second day of this rare three-day meeting of the two Korean leaders has been set aside for the main negotiations, but very little information has been released about exactly what President Roh Moo-hyun and Chairman Kim Jong-il will be talking about. It's thought the two leaders may discuss some contentious military issues - the location of the sea boundary between their two countries for example, and proposals to strengthen economic ties.

Meanwhile, the body language between the two leaders during their public walkabout in Pyongyang is being heavily scrutinised, with some commentators suggesting Kim Jong-il's frosty demeanour conveyed a lack of enthusiasm and sincerity. The South Korean government has responded, saying it is receiving a wholehearted and appropriate welcome.

John Sudworth, BBC News, Seoul

Listen to the words

rare
very unusual, not common

the main negotiations
the primary discussions, the most important talks

contentious
controversial, something that the two sides (here, North and South Korea) strongly disagree about

the sea boundary
an imaginary line in the ocean which divides the waters of North and South Korea (a boundary is a real or imagined line that marks the separation between things)

economic ties
the trading and business connections between the two countries

the body language
the way people show their true feelings or how they really feel by the way they move their hands, face and bodies (even if they say they feel something different)

public walkabout
when famous people walk around public places and meet members of the public

heavily scrutinised
looked at very closely or carefully

frosty demeanour
looking or behaving in a cold or unfriendly way

wholehearted
very enthusiastic


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