North and South Korea have held historic tensions since the uneasy ceasefire of the Korean War in 1953. In recent weeks, the North has ramped up its anti-South actions after defectors dropped leaflets in the North.
North Korea prepared 12 million propaganda leaflets to be sent to the South via balloons, which would be the largest ever propaganda campaign against the country.
Daily North Korea revealed that the country’s government has briefed reporters from Pyongyang to provinces to report on a counter-leafleting event.
A North Hamgyong Province-based source told Daily NK: “A special team of journalists is being recruited from provincial news agencies to report [on the leaflets drop.”
According to the source, North Korea’s Propaganda and Agitation Department ordered provincial newspapers to recommend journalists to join a special team to report on the leaflets drop near the 38th Parallel on June 20.
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The government department has reportedly told news outlets to recommend skilled, “ideologically fit” journalists.
Party officials at newspapers in Kaesong, South Hwanghae Province and Kangwon Province, among other areas, proceeded to investigate the backgrounds journalists among their staff to participate in reporting the event.
The source continued: “The Propaganda and Agitation Department ordered that lists of journalists be submitted by June 23.
“The newspapers sent over the lists and even detailed reporting plans to the department by June 22.
“All of the newspapers are now just waiting for additional orders from the department.”
The official Korean Central News Agency reported of the proposed plan: “Our plan of distributing the leaflets against the enemy is an eruption of the unquenchable anger of all the people and the whole society.
“The time for retaliatory punishment is drawing near.”
South Korea called on Pyongyang to suspend its plan as the leaflets “are not helpful to relations at all”.
It follows a series of escalating responses from North Korea.
On June 16, North Korea exploded a joint liaison offices set up to improve North/South relations.
North Korea confirmed in a statement carried by the official KCNA news agency that it had “tragically ruined” the office with a “terrific explosion”.
It said the building’s destruction had come “in the wake of cutting off all communication liaison lines between the North and the South”.