• Kyodo

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A North Korean city will send a delegation to a June 11-12 meeting in China to prepare for this fall’s summit of local government officials in East Asia, Tottori prefectural officials said Wednesday.

The delegation from the North Korean city of Rason will take part as observers in the preparatory meeting that will be held in the Chinese province of Jilin, where the Sea of Japan cooperation summit will also be held, the officials said.

North Korean officials also took part in a working-level meeting in 1998 as observers, but have never attended the summit. This year’s event, which will take place in early September, will be the eighth.

During the summit, representatives will include the heads of local governments from Tottori Prefecture, Jilin Province, South Korea’s Kangwon Province and the Primorsky territory in the Russian Far East.

Conference members have been urging North Korea to participate, saying the country’s attendance is essential in talks over Sea of Japan regional cooperation.

The conference has been held annually since its inception in 1994, with the exception of last year, when it was canceled due to financial difficulties afflicting the Russian host.

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