DPRK’s NDC inspects Kaesong zone

According to Yonhap:

A group of North Korean officials, including military officers, were inspecting an inter-Korean factory park in the North this week, a Seoul official said Tuesday, amid concerns Pyongyang may be moving to put the brakes on the long-running symbol of reconciliation.

The inspection, which began Monday with an abrupt notice, was reminiscent of a similar visit in December 2008. Six days later, the communist state temporarily banned South Korean access to it.

Eight North Korean officials, including a senior director of the National Defense Commission (NDC), inspected a South Korean company and some facilities such as a substation and roads in Kaesong on Tuesday, Unification Ministry spokesman Chun Hae-sung said.

The NDC is the highest seat of power in the North, chaired by leader Kim Jong-il. The visitors included uniformed officers who asked both South Koreans and North Koreans at the park rudimentary questions about their operations, Chun said.

“A wide range of questions was asked, such as items produced, the productivity of North Korean workers, the capacity of the sewage, and how certain facilities are maintained,” Chun told reporters.

More than 110 South Korean firms employ some 42,000 North Korean workers at the Kaesong industrial park, born out of the first inter-Korean summit in 2000. The park began operating in 2004.

Pyongyang said on April 8 that it would “entirely reevaluate” the park if relations between the sides do not improve, while ditching Seoul as a partner for joint tours to its eastern mountain resort.

The DRPK recently inspected the Kumgangsan resort before “seizing” several of the facilities.  The Kaesong Zone has been inspected several times before as well.


One Response to “DPRK’s NDC inspects Kaesong zone”

  1. Gag Halfrunt says:

    IIRC, the Kaesong industrial zone is connected to water and electricity supplies from South Korea. If the officials asked about the electrical substation, the sewage system and “certain facilities”, they might be trying to figure out whether the zone could still function if connections to the south were cut off.