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Press Briefings

Regular Briefing by Spokesperson Koo Byoungsam

Ministry of Unification

2024-01-30

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Date: Monday, January 29, 2024
Time: 10:30-10:35 A.M.

 

1. Minister’s Schedule

On January 29, from 10 A.M., Unification Minister Kim Yung Ho is delivering a special lecture at the National Institute for Unification Education.

At 3 P.M., Minister Kim will hold a meeting with civic groups to gather their opinions on the designation of a commemorative day for North Korean defectors.

On January 31, at 3 P.M., Minister Kim will attend a film screening event for “Beyond Utopia” and participate in a question and answer session with Pastor Kim Sung-eun who appears in the film.

On February 2, at 7:30 A.M., Minister Kim will make a guest appearance on SBS FM’s live radio program.

On February 3, at 2 P.M., Minister Kim will visit On Hospital in Busan to attend a work agreement event for the improvement of North Korean defectors’ mental health, as well as a talk concert.

 

2. Vice Minister’s Schedule

On February 3, at 6 P.M., Vice Minister Moon Seoung-hyun will attend a Seoul Fashion Week runway show displaying pieces symbolizing abductees, detainees, and prisoners of war.

 

3. Q&A

Q) A video clip obtained by the South and North Development research institute reportedly presented a scene implying that a middle school teacher in North Korea was caught creating a political party pursuing freedom and democracy. There have also been reports of riots by North Korean overseas workers due to overdue wages. As such, there seems to be growing resistance against the North Korean regime, and I would like to know if such internal development is a recent trend or if it is just being noticed. Is the Unification Ministry aware of any related events? And could this be related to the North’s recent provocations?

A) There is nothing the Unification Ministry can confirm regarding the video footage.

Though it is difficult to pinpoint specific cases of internal discontent, it can be assumed that the regime is feeling a need to strongly control the relaxed atmosphere within its society. The North has recently enforced control over its people through the Reactionary Ideology and Culture Rejection Act and the Pyongyang Cultural Language Protection Act, as well as stressing the role of mothers in educating the younger generation.

Q) What is the Unification Ministry’s stance on North Korea’s submarine-launched cruise missile (SLCM)?

A) Details of yesterday’s SLCM launch by the North will be analyzed by defense authorities.

Meanwhile, North Korea has recently emphasized the need to improve the livelihood of its people by promoting the regional development 20x10 policy, which seeks to modernize factories in 20 counties each year over the next decade. However, if insufficient resources are being wasted on weapons development and provocation, the improvement of people’s livelihoods will be nothing more than an empty promise even after 10 years.

The ROK Government urges the North to stop pursuing the path of provocation and isolation, and choose the right path to fundamentally improve the North Korean people’s troubling situation.

Q) At what point will the symbolic form of forget-me-not flowers set to be presented at Fashion Week be released?

A) Detailed plans are expected to be released before the runway show. We will internally review the appropriate timing and release it to the public.

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