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Summary of inter-Korean news this week

All News 16:00 August 14, 2020

SEOUL, Aug. 14 (Yonhap) -- The following is a summary of inter-Korean news this week.

N. Korea's border dam remains partially open amid heavy rains: JCS

SEOUL, Aug. 11 (Yonhap) -- Floodgates of a North Korean dam near the border with South Korea remain partially open amid heavy rains, the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said Tuesday, amid concerns the release of dam water could pose threats to South Korean regions downstream.

Whether the North opens the floodgates of Hwanggang Dam has been something to watch for in the South since an abrupt release of dam water in 2009 raised the water levels of the Imjin River downstream and left six campers dead.

The North has since agreed to notify the South in advance of a release but has hardly kept the promise.

U.N. grants Gyeonggi Province sanctions waiver for N.K. aid project

SEOUL, Aug. 12 (Yonhap) -- The United Nations has granted a sanctions waiver for South Korea's Gyeonggi provincial government to provide North Korea with a glass greenhouse system and related materials, the U.N. website showed Wednesday.

The exemption allows Gyeonggi Province to provide US$368,000 worth of "items to support the Improving Nutrition of Vulnerable Groups project, in Nampo and South Pyongan Province, through the provision of a glass greenhouse system and related materials," according to the website.

The exemption will be effective for six months until Feb. 4, 2021.

Unification ministry launches inspection of N.K. defector groups

SEOUL, Aug. 12 (Yonhap) -- The unification ministry has launched an inspection of civic groups this week, officials said Wednesday, amid criticism the probe targets North Korean defector organizations after tensions with Pyongyang spiked over their sending of propaganda leaflets across the border.

The inspection came a month after the ministry revoked the licenses of two defector groups over their sending of anti-Pyongyang leaflets and said it would launch a probe beginning with 25 civic organizations registered at the ministry, including 13 organizations run by North Korean defectors.

Subject to the initial audit are organizations in the areas of North Korean human rights and defector resettlement, and the ministry plans to expand the inspection to include organizations in other sectors, officials said.

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