By ANNE GEARAN, Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House says President Barack Obama will make a first visit as president to the Demilitarized Zone separating North and South Korea.
The most heavily defended border in the world carries obvious Cold War symbolism as Obama tries to foster new nuclear disarmament talks with North Korea.
Obama will be in South Korea for a nuclear security summit. He's making the DMZ his first stop on Sunday morning. Although U.S. officials regularly go there, the presidential visit is likely to be read by the North as a special show of strength to its new, untested leader.
Obama's visit next week comes amid new tension with the North over a planned long-range rocket launch. The U.S. has said the plan jeopardizes a deal to provide American food aid.