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Seoul laments NK’s removal of South Korea-built facilities at Mount Geumgang resort










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Seoul laments NK’s removal of South Korea-built facilities at Mount Geumgang resort

A man walks down the stairs in the lobby of the Geumgangsan hotel past the hotel's souvenir shop in North Korea's Mount Geumgang resort in this file photo from October 23, 2018. AP-Yonhap
A man walks down the stairs in the lobby of the Geumgangsan hotel past the hotel’s souvenir shop in North Korea’s Mount Geumgang resort in this file photo from October 23, 2018. AP-Yonhap


Seoul’s Unification Ministry on Tuesday expressed regret over North Korea’s continued dismantling of South Korean-built facilities at the Mount Geumgang resort on its east coast.

Voice of America reported that the North appears to have demolished a South Korean-built raw fish restaurant at the resort, citing satellite images taken by Planet Labs, a US earth-imaging company.

In response to the report, a senior Unification Ministry official expressed regret that the North continues to illegally infringe on South Korean property rights.

“North Korea’s demolition work is a flagrant violation of inter-Korean agreements,” the official told reporters.

“We urge North Korea to immediately cease its unilateral behavior and make it clear that all responsibility for the matter rests with the North,” he added.

Since March, North Korea has dismantled key resort facilities, including the Haegumgang Floating Hotel, Ananti Golf Resort and Onjong Pavilion, in line with its leader Kim Jong-un’s 2019 order to demolish all “unpleasant” facilities built. by the South.

Launched in 1998, the Mount Geumgang project was once considered a symbol of inter-Korean reconciliation. But Seoul suspended the program in July 2008 after a South Korean woman was killed by a North Korean soldier at the resort town.

Meanwhile, groups of South Korean businessmen who had invested in the tour project and the now closed Kaesong industrial complex have called on the government to compensate them ‘fully’ for their losses due to links. cross-border strained.

“The government should provide compensation and take responsibility if its decisions (to suspend inter-Korean projects) have caused financial damage to innocent people,” they said in a statement.

South Korea closed the industrial park in the North Korean border town of Kaesong in February 2016 in response to North Korea’s nuclear and long-range missile tests. (Yonhap)