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Press Briefings

Regular Briefing by Spokesperson Koo Byoungsam

Ministry of Unification

2024-04-29

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Regular Briefing by Spokesperson Koo Byoungsam
Date: Monday, April 29, 2024
Time: 10:30-10:35 A.M.

 

1. Weekly Schedule

On April 29, at 3 P.M., Unification Minister Kim Yung Ho will hold the first meeting between the Ministry of Unification and Christian officials, scheduled to be held regularly in the future.

At 6 P.M., Minister Kim will hold the 4th Evening of Unification.

At 8 P.M., Minister Kim will make an appearance at a program broadcasted on Korean Forces Network (KFN).

On April 30, at 10 A.M., Minister Kim will attend the cabinet meeting.

On May 1, at 7:30 A.M., Minister Kim will hold the 8th Wednesday Forum.

On May 2, at 11 A.M., Minister Kim will deliver a special lecture at the 2024 Global Strategy Meeting of the Peaceful Unification Advisory Council.

At 6 P.M., Minister Kim will hold the 5th Evening of Unification.

On May 3, at 9:30 A.M., Minister Kim will deliver congratulatory remarks at an academic conference of the Seoul National University’s Institute for Peace and Unification Studies.

At 10:30 A.M., Minister Kim will sit down for a meeting with Parliamentary State Secretary for East Germany Carsten Schneider.

At 3 P.M., Minister Kim will sit down for a meeting with officials of the Corporate Association of Gaeseong Industrial Complex.

Vice Minister Moon Seung-hyun will attend the Korea–Germany Unification Advisory Committee held from April 30 to May 1, and deliver a welcoming speech on April 30 at 10 A.M..

 

2. Q&A

Q) It has been reported today that the North has laid land mines on a road created near Arrowhead Hill for efforts to excavate remains of those killed during the Korean War. What is the Government’s position regarding this issue?

A) As a matter to be dealt by the Ministry of Defense, there is nothing the Unification Ministry can confirm. However, the Ministry is closely monitoring the situation while sharing necessary developments among related agencies.

Q) But as the North was previously seen removing streetlights on other roads as well, it is possible to interpret such move as an extension of North Korea’s efforts to completely block all roads between the two Koreas. What is the Unification Ministry’s take on this?

A) The North has continued to erase traces of unification and cut off inter-Korean relations. If this development turns out to be true, it can be seen as an extension of such recent efforts.

Q) A travel agency specializing in North Korea has been reportedly informed that the North will no longer use the phrase “Day of the Sun.” What would be the intention behind this?

A) There has been a sharp reduction in the use of the phrase “Day of the Sun” since this year’s birth anniversary of Kim Il Sung, which is on April 15. Though the Ministry has nothing to confirm regarding the report, it seems necessary to observe what the North’s intentions may be.

Q) A media company has reportedly acquired video clips implying the spread of a surrender campaign within North Korea in 2022. Would such trend (of voluntarily turning oneself in) still be prevalent now? To what degree is the Unification Ministry aware of this situation?

A) Are you referring to the spread of South Korean culture in the North? (Yes.)

The Ministry has nothing to confirm regarding the report. However, the North’s crackdown on outside culture and punishment toward those who access this is a serious violation of human rights. Even the UN has called for the North to repeal or reform the Reactionary Ideology and Culture Rejection Act through the Human Rights Council Resolution on the situation of human rights in the North. The Ministry emphasizes that imposing punishment, including the death penalty, for consuming outside culture is far from the common sense of the international community which recognizes human rights as a universal value.

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