North Korea

South Korea scraps annual government war drill

South Korea has decided to scrap an annual government mobilisation drill this year as part of a suspended joint exercise with US. The Ulchi drill, which aims at examining the country’s war preparedness, usually takes place in tandem with joint Freedom Guardian military exercise with US. The suspension of the combined exercise could facilitate ongoing nuclear talks between North Korea & US.

ROK & DPRK reopen maritime communication

North Korea and South Korea Sunday reopened maritime communication channel for the first time in 10 years with vessels from the 2 countries making contact. North Korean patrol boat responded immediately when the South Korean Navy contacted it via an international radio channel in the western sea. The Korean govt on both sides are working on confidence-building measures to boost cooperation.

N.Korea: ‘worst human trafficking country’

According to the annual ‘2018 Trafficking in Persons Report’, North Korea has been ranked as worst human trafficking country in the world, along with China, Russia and Iran. The report said that the North Korean govt continued to use forced labour in prison camps. South Korea has been ranked at the highest category for the 16th consecutive year, along with US, UK, France and Canada.

North Korea dismantled its nuclear test site

25 : North Korea has carried out demolition of its Punggye-ri nuclear test site in a series of huge explosions. Destruction of the nuclear testing tunnels at Punggye-ri is a tangible step toward denuclearization goal that Kim Jong-un agreed to at the 27 April Panmunjom Summit. North Korea permitted a group of journalists from Britain, China, Russia, South Korea and US to watch the destruction.

V.K. Singh’s surprise visit to North Korea

Minister of State for External Affairs General V.K. Singh has become the first Indian minister to visit North Korea in 20 years.The MoS highlighted the threat posed to India from nuclear proliferation. India and North Korea also decided to explore possibilities of cooperation in areas of mutual interest including vocational education, agriculture, pharmaceuticals and Yoga.

North Korea pledges to dismantle nuclear site

North Korea will commence dismantling its nuclear test site later this month in a bid to uphold its pledge to discontinue nuclear tests. The tunnel complex located in the northeastern part of the country which was used for nuclear testing will be destroyed completely. The announcement comes after US President Donald Trump announced that he will hold a meeting with Kim Jong-un in Singapore.

North Korea to rejoin South’s time zone

29 : North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will move country’s clocks 30 mins forward to unify with South’s time zone.The 2 countries on divided peninsula had different time zones since 2015 when North changed its standard time to 30 mins behind the South. North will move to the time zone used before Japan’s 1910-45 colonial rule of peninsula to mark the 70th anniversary of its liberation from Tokyo.

A historic event: North-South Korea meet

In a historic turn of events, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on April 27, 2018 stepped into South Korean border for a day of talks with the Southern President Moon Jae-in.Kim and Moon signed “Panmunjom Declaration,” named after the truce village in the Demilitarized Zone between the two Koreas.Both leaders also agreed to work jointly for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

North Korea halts nuclear, missile tests

21 : North Korea has agreed to end its tests of nuclear weapons & intercontinental ballistic missiles & shut down its nuclear test siteThe surprise announcement comes as North Korea prepares for talks with South Korea & US. Kim Jong-un has said his country no longer needed any nuclear or intercontinental ballistic missile tests because it has completed its goal of developing nuclear weapons.

UN imposes new sanctions on North Korea

The UN Security Council unanimously approved tough new sanctions against North Korea.These sanctions are taken in response to its latest launch of a ballistic missile that Pyongyang says is capable of reaching anywhere on the US mainland.The resolution includes lower limits on North Korea’s refined oil imports, the return home of all North Koreans working overseas within 24 months etc.

UNSC imposes sanctions on North Korea

United Nations Security Council has passed a resolution imposing sanctions on North Korea for its continued ICBM testing & violations of UN resolutions. Sanction includes ban on coal & other exports worth over $1 billion. It would be the 7th set of UN sanctions imposed on North Korea since it 1st nuclear test in 2006. It prevents North Korea from increasing no. of workers it sends abroad.

South Korea Approves Deal with Japan

South Korea President Park Geun-hye approved a military intelligence-sharing pact with Japan. It is aimed at countering the North Korean threat. Currently, Japan and South Korea use Washington as an intermediary when sharing intelligence on North Korea. But South Koreans are wary of cooperating too closely with Japan, which ruled Korea as a colony for 35 years until the end of World War II.