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People's Daily Online

DPRK refuses to sit face to face with S. Korean authorities

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 14:02, June 17, 2020

PYONGYANG, June 17 (Xinhua) -- A senior official of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) said on Wednesday that his government would not sit together with the authorities of South Korea and "there will be neither exchange nor cooperation in the future."

"We have no idea to sit together with the authorities of the south side who evoke only disgust and nasty feelings," Jang Kum Chol, director of the United Front Department of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, said in a statement carried by the official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

"That's why we began removing means for contact between the north and the south," he said.

Pyongyang cut off all communication lines with Seoul a week ago and blew up the joint liaison office building in Kaesong Industrial Zone near the border with South Korea on Tuesday in protest against the sending of leaflets criticizing the North's leadership by defectors and other activists in the South.

The liaison office was established in September 2018, as part of the Panmunjom Declaration signed by the two sides during the first summit between top DPRK leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in held on April 27, 2018.

Jang also said the South Korean authorities tried to shift the blame to Pyongyang, but "we are never afraid of whatever responsibility, as there are nothing to be implemented and no future for the north-south relations."

"Through the present crisis, we feel fortunate as we have confirmed once again the conclusion that the enemy is the enemy, after all," he emphasized in the statement.

In a related development, Pyongyang on Wednesday "flatly" rejected a plea from South Korea to send special envoys to the North to ease the current tensions on the peninsula.

"Upon the urgent message sent by the south side in a hurry, Kim Yo Jong, first vice department director of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, made known the stand that we flatly reject the tactless and sinister proposal," the KCNA said.

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