UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. Security Council is welcoming talks between the two Koreas saying they can open “possibilities for confidence building and trust building on the Korean peninsula.”

The council expressed hope in a statement that dialogue between North Korea and South Korea will reduce tensions and lead toward denuclearization of the peninsula.

The Security Council issued the statement after a closed briefing Wednesday on the meeting between senior officials of North and South Korea. The session was requested by Sweden and Poland.

Swedish Ambassador Olaf Skoog said after the meeting that North Korea’s decision to participate in the Winter Olympics is “a positive development.”

He welcomed the agreement on continued military-to-military talks and the reopened inter-Korean military hotline, saying these are important channels “to avoid misunderstanding and to reduce tensions.”