North Korea resumes hotline communication with South Korea

North Korea resumes hotline communication with South Korea
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North Korea on Wednesday resumed communication with its southern neighbor on a crucial communication channel for the first time in almost two years, The Associated Press reported. 

A North Korean official said on state television that leader Kim Jong Un directed officials to revive the hotline in Panmunjom.

South Korea’s Unification Ministry said the two nations "checked technical issues of the communication line" during the 20-minute call, which started at 3:30 p.m. local time, according to CNN.

The ministry said a second call followed a few hours later, the news network added.

The reopening of the channel comes after South Korea on Tuesday proposed talks with Pyongyang that could potentially take place next week. 

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Tensions over North Korea’s nuclear program have remained high ahead of the upcoming Winter Olympics, which will take place next month in South Korea.

The United States and the international community has tried to pressure North Korea in order to curb its nuclear ambitions, but Pyongyang has shown no signs of ending its nuclear testing.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpIran claims it rejected Trump meeting requests 8 times ESPY host jokes Putin was as happy after Trump summit as Ovechkin winning Stanley Cup Russian ambassador: Trump made ‘verbal agreements’ with Putin MORE, for his part, has swapped colorful insults with Kim, repeatedly referring to the North Korean leader as “Rocket Man.”

“North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the ‘Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times,’ ” Trump said Tuesday evening.

“Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!”