News / Asia

    South Korea Halts Aid, Inter-Korean Exchanges Over Nuclear Test

    FILE - South Korean trucks with food aid prepare to leave for the North Korean city of Kaesong in Paju, South Korea, Sept. 21, 2012.
    FILE - South Korean trucks with food aid prepare to leave for the North Korean city of Kaesong in Paju, South Korea, Sept. 21, 2012.
    Kim Hwan Yong

    South Korea said Thursday that it would temporarily suspend aid to North Korea and limit inter-Korean exchanges in response to Pyongyang’s nuclear test this week.

    A South Korean Unification Ministry official who asked to remain anonymous told reporters that the latest nuclear test was a “grave measure” that had harmed peace on the Korean Peninsula and stability in the region.

    The official also said that to ensure the safety of its citizens, the government would limit South Koreans’ entry to the Kaesong Industrial Complex, where about 50,000 North Koreans are working at about 120 factories run by South Korean companies. The government will allow only South Korean businessmen and workers directly involved in the operation of the factories to cross the Korean border, according to the official.

    This was the second time that South Korea imposed partial restrictions on its citizens’ entry to the complex. In 2013, Seoul took a similar measure after Pyongyang conducted its third nuclear test.

    Seoul turns to propaganda broadcasts

    In a related move, South Korea resumed loudspeaker propaganda broadcasts across the demilitarized zone (DMZ) at noon Friday.

    Cho Tae-yong, a senior presidential national security official, told reporters that Pyongyang’s nuclear test was a violation of the August 25 agreement, a reference to an inter-Korean deal that calls for easing tensions on the Korean Peninsula and promoting dialogue and exchanges between the Koreas.

    “North Korea’s fourth nuclear test is in direct violation of its commitments and responsibilities to the international community, such as multiple U.N. Security Council resolutions,” Cho said.

    Psychological warfare

    The propaganda broadcasts run by the South Korean military are a key part of the South Korean psychological warfare against North Korea. The South Korean military runs about a dozen facilities scattered near the DMZ, with each facility equipped with a bank of 48 loudspeakers. The broadcasts are aimed at North Korean soldiers deployed on the border.

    According to South Korea’s Defense Ministry, the broadcasts can reach the intended target about 20 kilometers away during the night. The South Korean military plans to run several advanced mobile loudspeakers capable of reaching farther than conventional loudspeakers.

    Cheong Seong-chang, director of unification strategy at the Sejong Institute in Seoul, said Pyongyang was likely to protest Seoul’s move strongly, with possible military provocations. Cho said the military was maintaining readiness against Pyongyang’s provocations, adding it would respond to such events firmly.

    North Korea announced Wednesday that it had successfully tested a miniaturized hydrogen bomb, drawing widespread condemnation from the international community.

    Jee Abbey Lee contributed to this report.

    You May Like

    Can EU Survive a Brexit?

    Across Europe politicians are asking if the British vote to leave the European Union will set in motion dynamics that will see other member states leave too

    Video Entrepreneurs at Global Summit Tackle Range of Challenges

    Innovators strive to halt sexual harassment in India, improve rural health in Myanmar, build businesses in Africa

    Key African Anti-Venom About to Permanently Run Out

    The tale of Fav-Afrique’s demise is a complicated one that reflects a deeper crisis brewing in global public health

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Britain’s Vote to Leave EU Sends Shockwaves Through Global Marketsi
    X
    June 24, 2016 10:43 AM
    Britain’s historic decision to leave the European Union is sending shockwaves through global markets. Markets from Tokyo to Europe tumbled Friday under the uncertainty the ballot brings, while regional leaders in Asia took steps to limit the possible fallout. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Britain’s Vote to Leave EU Sends Shockwaves Through Global Markets

    Britain’s historic decision to leave the European Union is sending shockwaves through global markets. Markets from Tokyo to Europe tumbled Friday under the uncertainty the ballot brings, while regional leaders in Asia took steps to limit the possible fallout. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.
    Video

    Video During Ramadan, Faith and Football Converge in Lebanon’s Megadome

    In Beirut, a group of young entrepreneurs has combined its Muslim faith and love of football to create the city's newest landmark: a large, Ramadan-ready dome primed for one of the biggest football (soccer) tournaments in the world. But as the faithful embrace the communal spirit of Islam’s holy month, it is not just those breaking their fasts that are welcome.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora