Yoon's office keeps open communication channel with N.K. rights activists
SEOUL, Jan. 9 (Yonhap) -- Presidential officials have granted meetings with North Korean human rights activists last year and will continue to keep dialogue channels with them open in a departure from the preceding Moon Jae-in administration, an official said Monday.
Last year, members of Fighters for Free North Korea and other activist groups requested a meeting with the presidential office and had one, a presidential official told Yonhap News Agency.
"We haven't met again this year yet, but we are keeping the channel open," the official said.
Under the Moon administration, the presidential office did not recognize such activist groups, many of whose members are North Korean defectors, as dialogue partners, treating them with hostility, according to the official.
Yoon, meanwhile, promised during his presidential campaign to work with the international community to enhance North Koreans' human rights, while also vowing under his administration's key tasks to facilitate the launch of a North Korean human rights foundation that has been delayed.
The presidential office is also looking into the activists' calls to allow the resumption of leaflet flying across the border to help inform North Koreans of the brutality of their regime.
Such considerations are taking place as the government weighs suspending a 2018 inter-Korean military tension reduction agreement in the event North Korea carries out more provocations similar to last month's drone infiltration of South Korean airspace.
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