The South Korean government says there should be progress in North Korea's denuclearization and other conditions should be met before considering whether to resume a long-suspended joint tourism project at the North's Mount Geumgang.

Asked by reporters on what the conditions are for getting the tours back on track, a Unification Ministry official also said Tuesday that inter-Korean consultations are required on ensuring the safety of South Korean tourists.  

As for resuming inter-Korean economic cooperation, such as the Mount Geumgang tours and the operation of the Gaeseong Industrial Complex, the official said the two Koreas will be able to discuss the issue when the time is right.

The official, however, said the most pressing issue at hand is the reunions of families separated during the Korean War that are set to take place next month.

Tours to Mount Geumgang were suspended on July 12th, 2008, a day after a South Korean tourist was shot dead by a North Korean soldier.

[Photo : YONHAP News]