UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!

Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)


North Korea Accuses Detained South Korean Worker of Slander

By VOA News
01 May 2009

North Korea says it is intensifying its investigation of a South Korean worker detained by the regime at a joint industrial complex just north of the border.

A statement issued Friday by the North Korean office overseeing the complex at Kaesong says the worker, identified as Yu Song-jin, "malignantly slandered" the regime's "dignified system." The statement says an unidentified agency is conducting a "deep-going investigation" into the case.

Yu Song-jin was detained by North Korean authorities on March 30 after allegedly making derogatory comments against Pyongyang. He is also suspected of trying to convince a North Korean woman to defect.

South Korea has repeatedly demanded Yu be released. Unification Minister Hyun In-taek issued a statement Tuesday saying the case will have important consequences for the future development of the joint venture.

Seoul also says Yu's detention amounts to a violation of human rights. But North Korea warned Friday there would be serious "consequences" if South Korea continued to raise the issue.

The Kaesong industrial park opened in 2005 as a symbol of reconciliation between the two Koreas. But the relationship has worsened since President Lee Myung-bak took office last February. Mr. Lee has made South Korean aid to the North contingent on Pyongyang's concrete progress toward nuclear disarmament.

North Korea has cut official contact with the South and restricted border crossings. Relations between the two sides grew more tense after the North launched a rocket on April 5.

Pyongyang also has announced that it wants to review contracts and wages at Kaesong.

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list