The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the Republic of Korea (ROK) connected a road across their shared border for the first time in 14 years, the ROK Ministry of National Defense said Thursday in the latest reconciliation gesture between the neighbors.
The dirt road, which is wholly within the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) that divides the Peninsula, will be used for joint operations next year to recover remains from the Korean War.
The 12-meter-wide construction of the route in Cheorwon, near the mid-point of the DMZ, is one of the several steps agreed at the Pyongyang summit between ROK President Moon Jae-in and DPRK leader Kim Jong Un in September.
The neighbors also pledged to remove bunkers and weapons from the border truce village of Panmunjom.
Pictures handed out by the ROK Defense Ministry Thursday showed an ROK soldier and his DPRK counterpart who took part in the roadworks holding their hands out toward each other, with their colleagues watching.
"It is historically significant for the North (DPRK) and the South (ROK) to open a new passage and jointly engage in operations to recover remains of war dead at the place which saw the worst battles during the war," the ministry said.