South Korea Loudspeaker Broadcasts To North Korea

South Korea Loudspeaker Broadcasts To North Korea

South Korea on Sunday broadcast anti-North Korean propaganda in border areas using large loudspeakers, in retaliation to Pyongyang’s trash balloons. Seoul had earlier warned Pyongyang to stop sending balloons carrying trash into the South.

Over the last couple of weeks, North Korea has reportedly sent over 1,000 balloons filled with trash and manure into South Korea, according to the Associated Press (AP). This was, North Korea said, in retaliation to leaflets criticising Pyongyang and USB drives containing K-pop and K-dramas sent into the country by South Korean activists.

South Korea’s broadcasts are seen as a form of psychological warfare, also deployed before, and North Korea has accused the country of creating a “prelude to a very dangerous situation”. 

Tensions between the war-divided countries are escalating as negotiations over North Korea’s nuclear ambitions remain stalled. 

South Korea’s National Security Council said while the measures taken maybe unbearable for the North Korean regime, “they will send a message of hope and light to the North’s troops and its people”, AFP reported.

It is unknown whether more broadcasts will follow, and it depends on how North Korea responds, the AFP report added.

Kim Yo-Jong’s Statement

According to AP, hours after the South resumed loudspeaker broadcasts, Kim Yo-jong, the sister of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, warned that South Korea would witness an unspecified “new response” from the North if it continues with its broadcasts and does not stop civilians from sending anti-North Korean leaflets across the border.  

“I sternly warn Seoul to immediately cease its dangerous activities that would further provoke a crisis of confrontation,” Kim Yo-jong said in a statement published by North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency, AP reported.

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Trash From North Korea Following Leaflets

According to AFP, Pyongyang started sending balloons carrying trash across the border in May in retaliation to anti-North leaflets flown by South Korean activists as part of a propaganda campaign. A group of activists, reportedly also comprising North Korean defectors, went against the warning and have since flown more balloons into North Korea containing leaflets criticising Kim Jong-un, besides USB sticks as well as US dollar notes.

While the exact nature of the fresh broadcasts isn’t known, in the past, South Korea used loudspeakers to blare anti-Pyongyang content, K-pop songs and international news across the rivals’ heavily armed border, AP reported. The South had withdrawn loudspeakers from border areas in 2018, during a brief period of engagement with the North under Seoul’s previous liberal government. 


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