NK activity increases at Panmunjom after inter
简介North Korea has increased activities in the truce village of Panmunjom after effectively scrapping a ...
North Korea has increased activities in the truce village of Panmunjom after effectively scrapping an inter-Korean military tension reduction agreement last month, Swedish and Swiss military generals overseeing the armistice said.
Maj. Gen. Lena Persson Herlitz and Maj. Gen. Ivo Burgener of the Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission made the remark in an interview with Yonhap News Agency, expressing concern the scrapping of the Comprehensive Military Agreement could increase the risks of military miscalculation.
"The intention of (the CMA) was to advance the Armistice Agreement, and, of course, there will be increased risk if there are no buffer zones," Herlitz of the Swedish delegation said during the interview held Thursday at Camp Bonifas, just south of the Demilitarized Zone separating the two Koreas.
"It's always good to have rules, and hopefully both sides follow them," she said.
Burgener, the Swiss general, said he saw "more soldiers" and "more movement" on the North Korean side of the Joint Security Area at Panmunjom two weeks ago. Asked to elaborate, Herlitz said, "More activities, but no details."
That is when the North said on Nov. 23 that it will restore all military measures halted under the 2018 agreement, after the South suspended part of the deal in protest of the North's successful launch of a military spy satellite on Nov. 21.
Disarming the JSA was one of the points of the agreement, along with withdrawing border guard posts within 1 kilometer of the border, banning military drills and maneuvers near the land and sea borders, and establishing no-fly zones along the border.
Since scrapping the accord, the North has begun reinstalling guard posts and deploying heavy arms within the DMZ, according to the South's defense ministry. North Korean soldiers in the JSA have been seen carrying pistols, according to local reports.
The agreement, also known as the Sept. 19 military agreement, was signed on Sept. 19, 2018, at the height of a reconciliatory mood when then South Korean President Moon Jae-in traveled to Pyongyang for summit talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
Relations between the two sides have soured after South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol took office with a harder-line stance on Pyongyang, and the North undertook a series of provocations, including long-range missile launches.
The two generals, however, noted the CMA's suspension would not impact the NNSC's mission.
"Globally speaking, of course it is a pity this evolution, this development. But that has nothing to do with the NNSC, or (does) not directly impact the NNSC," Burgener said.
Herlitz also said the NNSC's task remains the same, and it will continue to observe the compliance of the armistice that halted the 1950-53 Korean War.
The NNSC has served to monitor the implementation of the armistice as an "impartial" observer, Herlitz said, as the Korean War did not end with a peace treaty, technically leaving the two Koreas still at war.
While Swedish and Swiss delegations have been stationed on the southern side, what was previously Czechoslovakia and Poland represented the NNSC on the northern front until North Korea expelled them and declared the monitoring group invalid in light of the fall of communist governments in Eastern Europe in the 1990s.
"At the NNSC, we are a third party that's to be independent and impartial and to observe all the activities that the UNCMAC is conducting when it comes to inspections," Herlitz said, using the acronym for the US-led UN Command Military Armistice Commission.
While North Korea has denounced annual military drills between South Korea and the US as a rehearsal for war, she said the NNSC observed the joint exercise as "deterrence" and "defensive in nature."
The two generals also stressed that their countries remain committed to the Armistice Agreement, which they described as still "valid."
"Neither of our countries has the intention to quit," Burgener said. "There's no discussion about leaving this commission or stopping it."
In addressing the challenge posed by the absence of representation on the northern side, Herlitz underscored the importance of communicating with North Korea to maintain stability on the peninsula.
"They are always welcome to T1 -- the NNSC headquarters in the conference room -- we are always open for dialogue." (Yonhap)
LG Energy Solution said Friday that it has signed an agreement with Impact Clean Power Technology, a ...
Large South Korean firms' ability to service their debts worsened sharply in the first half of ...
Seoul shares opened higher Tuesday, tracking gains on Wall Street, after Federal Reserve officials m ...
OPEC members push against fossil fuel phase
Disney+’s ‘Moving’ sweeps BIFF’s Asia Contents Awards & Global OTT Awards
Posco Holdings recoups investment in Roy Hill after 13 years
US eases export controls on chip equipment for Samsung, SK factories in China
안희정, 복귀 시동?…"이제 죄인 아니다" 지지자들과 양평 1박2일
김건희 여사, 광주디자인비엔날레 찾아 “문화예술계 육성 의지”
- SPC Chairman's office searched over alleged unjust labor practices
- [Herald Review] Up
- Taemin of SHINee returns solo with 4th EP ‘Guilty’
- [Korea Beyond Korea] Historian looks back at life dedicated to Korean studies
- [사진] “군 초급간부 여건 개선 노력해달라”
- Taemin of SHINee returns solo with 4th EP ‘Guilty’
- Plush bag charms in high demand among young Korean women
- Major retailer recalls over 50,000 pairs of shower shoes due to chemical hazard
- Exports of passenger cars up 16 pct in Q3 on eco
- Retail sales up 9.5 pct in Sept. on strong online demand
- Jeju's autonomy is model for Western Sahara: Morocco
- [Today’s K
- School violence drops, drugs among teens surge: police
- 정부, GP 복원 계획…김태효 "北 무장에 가만히 있으면 안된다"
- Labor unions slam government efforts to attract more foreign workers
- [Herald Review] ‘Single in Seoul’ a bland rom
- Samsung Biologics sees highest
- 'Do not open plane doors' warning mandated for planes in flight
- Transgender blind spot in hospitalization: NHRCK
- Disability rights group lodges complaint with rights watchdog over leader's arrest
- Spike in camping enthusiasts in Korea, yet camping etiquette lags behind
- LG Electronics CEO to present AI vision at CES
- Dog meat group threatens to release 2 million dogs near presidential office
- Hillstate Gayang flats in Daejeon to go on sale
- "조선의 샛별 여장군, 세계가 우러러 볼것"…北, 김주애도 우상화
- South Korea warns tit
- Korean Air orders 20 Airbus A321neo aircraft
- S. Korea, Japan, China agree to accelerate summit efforts
- Hanwha Ocean developing submarine stealth technology
- Hyundai Motor bolsters global partnerships through Expo campaign