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North Korea hinted Wednesday that it would halt any plans to test a long-range missile if the U.S. agreed to direct talks, as a former South Korean president scrapped plans to visit the North because of its apparent moves toward a launch.
Tensions in the region have soared following intelligence reports that the North has fueled a ballistic missile believed capable of reaching U.S. territory. The U.S. and Japan have said they could consider sanctions against the impoverished country if it goes ahead.