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Iran Press TV

North Korea renews threat to close joint industrial zone with South

Iran Press TV

Thu Apr 11, 2013 8:7AM GMT

North Korea has once again threatened to permanently close the Kaesong joint industrial zone with South Korea amid tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

On Thursday, Pyongyang blamed the "confrontation" policies of the South's new President Park Geun-hye.

North Korea's Bureau for Central Guidance to the Development of the Special Zone said, "Needless to say Kaesong industrial district will cease to exist should the Park Geun-hye regime continue pursuing confrontation."

A spokesman at the North Korean bureau said South Korea's "warmongering" had been responsible for the decision to suspend the activity of the 123 South Korean firms in Kaesong, which lies about 10 kilometers (six miles) inside North Korea.

South Korea on Wednesday raised its military surveillance alert to 'vital threat' amid claims that North Korea would test-launch a medium-range missile.

The decision was made after South Korean intelligence said that the North was prepared to launch at least one mid-range missile from its eastern coast.

South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se warned Pyongyang that it would face a fresh round of UN sanctions if it conducts a new missile test.

The Korean Peninsula has been locked in a cycle of escalating military rhetoric following the participation of nuclear-capable US B-52 and B-2 stealth bombers in recent joint military drills with South Korea.

On April 9, North Korea urged all foreign institutions, enterprises, and tourists in South Korea to leave the country, warning that the Korean Peninsula was nearing a 'thermonuclear war.'

On March 30, North Korea declared that it was in a "state of war" with South Korea. Pyongyang warned that if Washington and Seoul launched a preemptive attack, the conflict would "not be limited to a local war, but develop into an all-out war, a nuclear war."

Washington has also deployed two guided-missile destroyers in the Pacific to the waters off the Korean Peninsula.


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