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North Korea denies it apologized over land mine blast that maimed 2 South Koreans

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SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea is denying Seoul's claim that the North's recent expression of "regret" after a marathon negotiating session is an apology for a mine explosion that maimed two South Korean soldiers.

The statement Tuesday by Pyongyang's powerful National Defense Commission further belies Seoul's claim that it successfully pushed the North in the talks last week to take responsibility for the blast. The statement says Seoul must stop saying the North apologized or face unspecified consequences.

The North's vague expression of "regret" over the South Korean soldiers' injuries, not over laying the mines, allowed the two Koreas to back away from threats of war. Seoul responded by turning off cross-border loudspeaker broadcasts critical of the North's political system.

North Korea also criticized South Korea's recent live-fire drills with the U.S.

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