North Korea to deploy troops to two demilitarized areas near border

17, Jun. 2020

Image by pontamax from Pixabay
Image by pontamax from Pixabay

BEIJING, Kyodo - North Korean troops are redeploying to two areas that had been demilitarized under agreements with the South, official media said Wednesday, in the wake of the demolition the previous day by the North of a joint liaison office.

The Korean Central News Agency also reported that Kim Yo Jong, sister of leader Kim Jong Un, has rejected South Korea's offer to send special envoys to North Korea following the blowing up of the inter-Korean liaison office in the North Korean border city of Kaesong.

In a statement carried by the news agency, Kim Yo Jong also criticized South Korea President Moon Jae In's offer in a speech earlier in the week of inter-Korean dialogue, saying he had "reeled off a string of shameless and impudent words full of incoherence."

The South later rebuked North Korea for snubbing Moon's offer to send the envoys, saying disclosing the secret proposal was "irrational."

Moon's office also said that remarks Kim Yo Jong had made directly critical of the president were "very rude" and could not be tolerated, warning they would lead to a loss of trust between the leaders of the two Koreas.

The South Korean military separately said the North would "pay the price" if it puts its words into action in relation to its planned reinforcements among troops on the front line.

A spokesman for the General Staff of the North's Korean People's Army said in a statement via KCNA that besides sending regiment-level units to the Mt. Kumgang resort area on the east coast and the Kaesong Industrial Zone in the western border area, the military will set up guard posts that had been withdrawn from the Demilitarized Zone dividing the two Koreas under a bilateral agreement.

Both areas were previously sites for economic cooperation projects with the South.

The artillery units deployed in the western Yellow Sea side of the country will also "upgrade the level of the front guard duty" and resume "all kinds of regular military exercises in the areas close to the boundary," the spokesman said.

The statement added that the military's General Staff will work out "military action plans against enemy" in more detail and present them to the Central Military Commission of the ruling Workers' Party of Korea at the earliest date. (Kyodo)