03/16/2021, 10.07
KOREA - USA
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Kim Jong-un's sister threatens Seoul and Washington

Response to military exercises between the South and the United States. The inter-Korean military agreement is at risk. Pyongyang wants to close its office for dialogue with South Korea. Absence of communication between the North Korean regime and the Biden administration.

Seoul (AsiaNews / Agencies) - North Korea is threatening to withdraw from a military agreement with the South and to close its own body responsible for inter-Korean dialogue if Seoul and the US do not put an end to their military exercises.

An article carried in today’s edition of the governmental Rodong Sinmun writes today, quotes the words of Kim Yo-jong, sister of the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

It is the first time to date for the North Korean leadership to directly address the Biden administration since the new President took office in January. The harsh statement comes two days after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and his colleague for defense Lloyd Austin visited South Korea. On March 14, the White House claimed to have tried to contact Pyongyang without receiving a response.

Kim Yo-jong described the ongoing maneuvers between the South Korean and US forces are "proof of invasion", despite the fact that they are conducted with minimal impact and mostly through computer simulations due to Covid-19.

In case of further provocations, she said the North will no longer respect the September 2018 pact, agreed with Seoul to ease tensions along the border.

Kim Yo-jong added that under current conditions there is no reason to maintain the Committee for the peaceful reunification of the country, in charge of dialogue with South Korea and managing border issues.

In January, during a rare congress of the Workers' Party (in power in North Korea since the end of World War II), Kim Jong-un said that peace talks with the South could only resume if Seoul and Washington give up their military exercises. The dialogue between the two Koreas broke down in early 2019, after the failure of negotiations between Pyongyang and the Trump administration to end the North Korean nuclear program. Last June, when the North blew up a contact office in the border city of Kaesong, relations between the two governments plummeted further.

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