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Preparation for legal complaint against leaflet-sending defector group still in process

All News 11:48 June 11, 2020

SEOUL, June 11 (Yonhap) -- The unification ministry is still reviewing details in preparation to file a complaint with police against two North Korean defector groups for sending anti-Pyongyang leaflets across the border, a ministry official said.

On Wednesday, the unification ministry said it will file a complaint against two defector groups, Fighters for Free North Korea and Keunsaem, for violating the inter-Korean exchange and cooperation act that bans sending goods to North Korea without government permission.

The ministry also said it will take action to revoke business permits granted to the groups.

The decision came two days after the North vowed to cut off all inter-Korean communication lines over such leafleting.

"Although I would like to tell you the complaint will be filed within this week, I heard we are still 'in the process' as we have a few details to review," the official said."We will proceed as soon as we complete preparation for filing the complaint."

The ministry is also looking into other charges against the defector groups, including violations of the marine wastes control act and the aviation safety act.

North Korean defectors and anti-Pyongyang activists have for years sent a large number of leaflets via giant balloons. North Korea has bristled at such activities, saying they are aimed at tarnishing its leader.

The government has advised against sending such leaflets, citing concerns about the safety of residents in the border regions, but they have often ignored such an appeal, citing their right to freedom of expression.

julesyi@yna.co.kr
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