North Korea on Thursday rejected a South Korean demand for a promise not to take any actions that may again disrupt the operations at a joint industrial complex in its territory, calling it “ridiculous,” South Korean News Agency (Yonhap) reported today.
The joint industrial complex in the North’s border city of Kaesong remains shut down since early April when North Korea, citing joint South Korea-U.S. military exercises under way, withdrew all of its 53,000 workers. South Korea responded by pulling out its own manpower.
In testimony to a parliamentary committee earlier this week, Unification Minister Ryoo Kihl-jae said that in order to reopen the industrial complex, South Korea needs “a promise (from North Korea) that similar things will not be repeated in the future.”
Through its propaganda Web site Uriminzokkiri on Thursday, North Korea claimed that Seoul is to blame for the suspension of the joint industrial park.
The Web site also reiterated Pyongyang’s stance that South Korea “should first take measures to end provocative actions and military threats against us.”