Date
23 September 2017
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un looks through a pair of binoculars as he guides a flight drill for the inspection of airmen of the Korean People's Army in this undated photo released by state media last week. Credit: Reuters
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un looks through a pair of binoculars as he guides a flight drill for the inspection of airmen of the Korean People's Army in this undated photo released by state media last week. Credit: Reuters

Inter-Korean dialogue called off ‘for now’

South Korea said it regrets an announcement by Pyongyang that it has no intention of resuming high-level talks between the two neighbors. 

The unification ministry on Sunday issued a statement of “strong regret” over North Korea’s move, which was apparently in protest against South Korean civilian activists sending balloons with anti-Pyongyang leaflets attached across the border, the Wall Street Journal reported. 

“The second high-level talks between South and North [Korea] have been virtually called off for now,” ministry spokesman Lim Byeong-cheol was quoted as saying, adding that Seoul has no plan to make extra efforts to resume the inter-Korean dialogue.

Pyongyang routinely objects to the balloon releases and threatens to attack the organizers. On Oct. 10, North Korean border guards shot at some balloons with an antiaircraft gun that sent some shells south of the border and triggered a rare exchange of fire with South Korean soldiers.

The North says the spreading of leaflets is tantamount to “an act of war”, and accuses the South Korean government of failing to stop the activity.

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RA/RC

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