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N. Korea accuses U.S. of interfering in inter-Korean affairs, warns of 'terrible' things

All Headlines 08:33 June 11, 2020

By Koh Byung-joon

SEOUL, June 11 (Yonhap) -- North Korea slammed the United States on Thursday for interfering in inter-Korean affairs after Washington voiced disappointment over Pyongyang's decision to cut off all communication lines with South Korea.

Kwon Jong-gun, director general of the North Korean foreign ministry's American affairs department, made the remark, warning that the U.S. better mind its own business without meddling in inter-Korean issues if it wants to avoid "terrible" consequences.

"The North-South relations are a matter of absolutely our own people, and nobody has any right to meddle with whatsoever," Kwon said in an interview with the Korean Central News Agency.

"(The U.S.) could face unbearable bad things if it uselessly interferes in North-South issues, not thinking about its own domestic matters in times of messier situations like never before," he added. "If the U.S. does not want to face terrible things, it should shut its mouth up and work on bringing its house in order first."

Kwon said the U.S. is showing a hypocritical attitude by expressing dissatisfaction over the latest inter-Korean situations given that Washington has been the one bent on hampering any progress.

He was apparently referring to Washington's staunch stance on keeping global sanctions on North Korea until its complete denuclearization, which stands in the way of active cross-border cooperation and exchanges.

On Tuesday, North Korea called the South an "enemy" and cut off all inter-Korean communication lines. The move came after Pyongyang threatened to abolish an inter-Korean liaison office and completely shut down other major cross-border programs, denouncing leaflet-sending as a hostile act breaching a series of peace agreements between the two sides.

A State Department official later told Yonhap News Agency that the U.S. has always supported progress in inter-Korean relations and expressed disappointment over the North's latest actions.

This photo, captured from the homepage of the Korean Central News Agency on June 9, 2020, shows one of the marches by North Korean youths and students across the nation in protest against anti-Pyongyang leaflets recently sent to the communist nation via balloons by North Korean defectors in South Korea. (For Use Only in the Republic of Korea. No Redistribution) (Yonhap)

kokobj@yna.co.kr
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