North Korea has blown up a joint office with South Korea in Kaesong which is used for talks between the two countries. The latest move is an indication that talks between the two nations are deteriorating. South Korea indicated has that the four-story building which is at the border of the two countries was completely destroyed.
According to the South Korean Unification Ministry, the office had been closed since January 20 due to COVID-19. The ministry also added that no South Korean staff had been to the office since the closure.
North Korea destroyed the office after defectors from the North send balloons containing anti-North Korean leaflets. A statement from the North indicated that the leaflets hurt the dignity of their supreme leader. North Korea indicated that they were going to cut all communication with the South. True to their word, they cut all communication with the South including the direct calls between the two leaders.
The destruction of the office has brought tension between the two countries with the South Korean Defense Ministry indicating that it was monitoring North Korea’s military and that any provocations would be responded to in the strongest manner possible.
A strong message from Kim Yo Jong
Kim Jong Un’s sister, Kim Yo Jong demanded that South Korea punish those who send the leaflets. Last week Kim had indicated that the liaison office would be destroyed in one way or the other.
“Before long, a tragic scene of the useless North-South joint liaison office completely collapsed would be seen.”
With Kim Yo Jong being the second most powerful, her statement indicated the position of the supreme leader.
South Korea is said to be investigating the source of the leaflets. However many are waiting to see whether anyone will be punished putting in mind that in South Korea there is freedom of speech. South Korean President Moon Jae-in said that North Korea should return to the negotiating table rather than fueling violence and raising tension. Moon added that the promise of peace made to the Korean people would not be reversed.