Showing posts tagged as "South Korea"

Showing posts tagged South Korea

11 Apr
Out of the blue | S.C.S.
FORAGING in South Korea’s mountains may soon become more fruitful. Since a wild ginseng digger reported the wreckage of a small unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) on April 3rd, the South’s ministry of defence has been ruminating on rewards for anyone who spots an enemy drone. The report followed the discovery of two other similar aircraft: on March 24th in Paju, a border city; and on March 31st on Baengnyeong island, near the disputed Northern Limit Line which demarcates the two Koreas’ maritime border. North Korean inscriptions on the planes’ batteries; an ongoing military investigation into their engines, fuel tanks and weight; and the sequence of the photographs found stored in one of the plane’s cameras suggest the drones were sent from North Korea. For others, their sky-blue camouflage paintwork, identical to that on larger drones paraded in the capital Pyongyang two years ago, was a giveaway.
FULL ARTICLE (The Economist)
Photo: Uwe Schwarzbach/Flickr

Out of the blue | S.C.S.

FORAGING in South Korea’s mountains may soon become more fruitful. Since a wild ginseng digger reported the wreckage of a small unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) on April 3rd, the South’s ministry of defence has been ruminating on rewards for anyone who spots an enemy drone. The report followed the discovery of two other similar aircraft: on March 24th in Paju, a border city; and on March 31st on Baengnyeong island, near the disputed Northern Limit Line which demarcates the two Koreas’ maritime border. North Korean inscriptions on the planes’ batteries; an ongoing military investigation into their engines, fuel tanks and weight; and the sequence of the photographs found stored in one of the plane’s cameras suggest the drones were sent from North Korea. For others, their sky-blue camouflage paintwork, identical to that on larger drones paraded in the capital Pyongyang two years ago, was a giveaway.

FULL ARTICLE (The Economist)

Photo: Uwe Schwarzbach/Flickr

7 Apr
South Korea finds images of presidential residence on Kim Jong-un’s drones | Julian Ryall
Two North Korean drones that crashed in South Korea had taken hundreds of aerial photos of military installations as well as the official residence of President Park Guen-hye, authorities in Seoul have revealed.
Presidential security has been stepped up after one of the unmanned aerial vehicles, which crashed near the town of Paju last week, was found to contain images of the Blue House, the target of a 1968 assassination attempt by Pyongyang against the then South Korean leader.
Another, which crash-landed on Baeknyeong Island, off the west coast of the Korean peninsula on Monday, had photographed the defences on the island and the neighbouring islands of Socheong and Daecheong.
FULL ARTICLE (The Telegraph)
Photo: toughkidcst/flickr

South Korea finds images of presidential residence on Kim Jong-un’s drones | Julian Ryall

Two North Korean drones that crashed in South Korea had taken hundreds of aerial photos of military installations as well as the official residence of President Park Guen-hye, authorities in Seoul have revealed.

Presidential security has been stepped up after one of the unmanned aerial vehicles, which crashed near the town of Paju last week, was found to contain images of the Blue House, the target of a 1968 assassination attempt by Pyongyang against the then South Korean leader.

Another, which crash-landed on Baeknyeong Island, off the west coast of the Korean peninsula on Monday, had photographed the defences on the island and the neighbouring islands of Socheong and Daecheong.

FULL ARTICLE (The Telegraph)

Photo: toughkidcst/flickr

31 Mar
North Korea declares no-sail warning off coast to conduct firing drills | Jack Kim and James Pearson
North Korea declared a no-sail warning on Monday for areas off its west coast near a disputed border with South Korea and has notified the South that it will conduct firing drills, a South Korean government official said.
The area is near the so-called Northern Limit Line, drawn up at the end of the 1950-53 Korean War, which the North has refused to recognize. Past clashes between the two navies in the area killed scores of sailors on both sides.
The warning comes amid heightened tensions surrounding the North after the U.N. Security Council condemned Pyongyang for its mid-range missile launches last week, just as the leaders of South Korea, Japan and the United States met to discuss the North’s arms program.
FULL ARTICLE (Reuters)
Photo: expertinfantry/flickr

North Korea declares no-sail warning off coast to conduct firing drills | Jack Kim and James Pearson

North Korea declared a no-sail warning on Monday for areas off its west coast near a disputed border with South Korea and has notified the South that it will conduct firing drills, a South Korean government official said.

The area is near the so-called Northern Limit Line, drawn up at the end of the 1950-53 Korean War, which the North has refused to recognize. Past clashes between the two navies in the area killed scores of sailors on both sides.

The warning comes amid heightened tensions surrounding the North after the U.N. Security Council condemned Pyongyang for its mid-range missile launches last week, just as the leaders of South Korea, Japan and the United States met to discuss the North’s arms program.

FULL ARTICLE (Reuters)

Photo: expertinfantry/flickr

25 Feb
"North Korea is far outside the boundary of accepted behavior" - expert | Roman Kosarev
The exercises led to an extended surging tension last year when North Korea threatening preemptive nuclear strikes and attacks on South Korean and US targets. Meanwhile around 360 South Koreans reportedly met their North Korean relatives on Monday for the first time since the Korean War, that lasted between 1950 and 1953. The family reunion event took place in North Korea’s mount Kumgang resort. The Voice of Russia talked to Daniel Pinkston, a North East Asia Deputy Project Director at the International Crisis Group.
FULL INTERVIEW (Voice of Russia)
Photo: rapidtravelchai/flickr

"North Korea is far outside the boundary of accepted behavior" - expert | Roman Kosarev

The exercises led to an extended surging tension last year when North Korea threatening preemptive nuclear strikes and attacks on South Korean and US targets. Meanwhile around 360 South Koreans reportedly met their North Korean relatives on Monday for the first time since the Korean War, that lasted between 1950 and 1953. The family reunion event took place in North Korea’s mount Kumgang resort. The Voice of Russia talked to Daniel Pinkston, a North East Asia Deputy Project Director at the International Crisis Group.

FULL INTERVIEW (Voice of Russia)

Photo: rapidtravelchai/flickr

20 Feb
Separated Korean Relatives Meet for Emotional Reunions | Daniel Schearf
More than 100 South Koreans have crossed into North Korea to meet with relatives they have not seen since the 1950s Korean War. Pyongyang has not allowed the emotional reunions since 2010 and analysts have said the isolated nation uses them for political purposes.
One hundred forty South Koreans, most in their 70s and 80s, arrived Thursday at North Korea’s Mount Kumgang resort.
They are part of several hundred chosen by lottery to spend two days meeting with North Korean relatives they have not seen in six decades.
FULL ARTICLE (Voice of America)
Photo: lookingpost/flickr

Separated Korean Relatives Meet for Emotional Reunions | Daniel Schearf

More than 100 South Koreans have crossed into North Korea to meet with relatives they have not seen since the 1950s Korean War. Pyongyang has not allowed the emotional reunions since 2010 and analysts have said the isolated nation uses them for political purposes.

One hundred forty South Koreans, most in their 70s and 80s, arrived Thursday at North Korea’s Mount Kumgang resort.

They are part of several hundred chosen by lottery to spend two days meeting with North Korean relatives they have not seen in six decades.

FULL ARTICLE (Voice of America)

Photo: lookingpost/flickr

6 Feb
South Korean politician charged with treason | Julian Ryall
When two left-leaning political parties merged to form The Unified Progressive Party (UPP) in December 2011, and were later joined by elements of a third party, South Korea’s socialists believed they had discovered a new voice.
This sentiment was stoked by the UPP winning eight new seats in the general election held in April the following year, bringing its total to 13 out of the 300 in the National Assembly.
Officially describing itself as a progressive political grouping, the party advocates an end to military cooperation with the United States, achieving peace with the regime in North Korea, the abolition of nuclear weapons on the Korean peninsula and, eventually, the reunification of the two neighboring states.
However, events soon took a turn for the worse when the party’s Central Committee launched an investigation over allegations of irregularities in the selection of its proportional representation candidates for parliament. Although the UPP’s four joint leaders resigned to take responsibility for the scandal, things were about to get much worse for the fledgling party.
FULL ARTICLE (Deutsche Welle)
Photo: NewsHour/flickr

South Korean politician charged with treason | Julian Ryall

When two left-leaning political parties merged to form The Unified Progressive Party (UPP) in December 2011, and were later joined by elements of a third party, South Korea’s socialists believed they had discovered a new voice.

This sentiment was stoked by the UPP winning eight new seats in the general election held in April the following year, bringing its total to 13 out of the 300 in the National Assembly.

Officially describing itself as a progressive political grouping, the party advocates an end to military cooperation with the United States, achieving peace with the regime in North Korea, the abolition of nuclear weapons on the Korean peninsula and, eventually, the reunification of the two neighboring states.

However, events soon took a turn for the worse when the party’s Central Committee launched an investigation over allegations of irregularities in the selection of its proportional representation candidates for parliament. Although the UPP’s four joint leaders resigned to take responsibility for the scandal, things were about to get much worse for the fledgling party.

FULL ARTICLE (Deutsche Welle)

Photo: NewsHour/flickr

5 Feb
North and South Korea agree to first family reunions in four years | Julian Ryall
Seoul and Pyongyang have agreed to bring together families kept apart for more than 60 years, although there is skepticism among many in South Korea that the North will keep its word.
Representatives of the two nations began working-level talks at the border village of Panmunjom at 10 am on Wednesday morning. A second session was scheduled for the afternoon, but the delegates were quickly able to reach an agreement.
Family members living in South Korea will be permitted to travel to the Mount Kumgang resort, in North Korea, for six days from February 20, where they will be reunited with relatives they have not seen since the Korean War ended in 1953 in an uneasy stalemate.
Pyongyang’s rapid acceptance of the dates and other details for the visit underline the suggestion that it is on a charm offensive towards South Korea and, at the same time, trying to prise Seoul away from its close diplomatic and defence ties to the United States.
At the same time as its representatives were discussing the reunions at Panmunjom, state-run media were castigating Washington for attempting to hinder improved relations between the two countries.
FULL ARTICLE (The Telegraph)
Photo:  UNC - CFC - USFK/flickr

North and South Korea agree to first family reunions in four years | Julian Ryall

Seoul and Pyongyang have agreed to bring together families kept apart for more than 60 years, although there is skepticism among many in South Korea that the North will keep its word.

Representatives of the two nations began working-level talks at the border village of Panmunjom at 10 am on Wednesday morning. A second session was scheduled for the afternoon, but the delegates were quickly able to reach an agreement.

Family members living in South Korea will be permitted to travel to the Mount Kumgang resort, in North Korea, for six days from February 20, where they will be reunited with relatives they have not seen since the Korean War ended in 1953 in an uneasy stalemate.

Pyongyang’s rapid acceptance of the dates and other details for the visit underline the suggestion that it is on a charm offensive towards South Korea and, at the same time, trying to prise Seoul away from its close diplomatic and defence ties to the United States.

At the same time as its representatives were discussing the reunions at Panmunjom, state-run media were castigating Washington for attempting to hinder improved relations between the two countries.

FULL ARTICLE (The Telegraph)

Photo:  UNC - CFC - USFK/flickr

29 Jan
North Korea warns of tensions over US-South Korea war games | Eric Talmadge
North Korea’s propaganda machine is churning out near-daily denunciations of the United States and South Korea for a series of soon-to-start military maneuvers, warning nuclear war could be imminent and saying it will take dramatic action of its own if further provoked.
Sound familiar?
North Korea’s increasingly shrill opposition to the annual joint drills named Foal Eagle looks very similar to the kind of vitriol that preceded the start of the same exercises last year and led to a steep rise in tensions on the Korean Peninsula. That round of escalation culminated in threats of a nuclear strike on Washington and the flattening of Seoul before the maneuvers ended and both sides went back to their corners.
It appears the first stages of this year’s battle have already begun - though some experts say they don’t think it will be as high-pitched as last year’s.
In the latest of North Korea’s increasingly frequent salvos against the exercises, it said through its state-run media that the United States is building up its military forces in Asia so it can invade the country - formally called the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, or DPRK - and take control of the whole region.
FULL ARTICLE (Associated Press)
Photo: UNC - CNC - USFK/flickr

North Korea warns of tensions over US-South Korea war games | Eric Talmadge

North Korea’s propaganda machine is churning out near-daily denunciations of the United States and South Korea for a series of soon-to-start military maneuvers, warning nuclear war could be imminent and saying it will take dramatic action of its own if further provoked.

Sound familiar?

North Korea’s increasingly shrill opposition to the annual joint drills named Foal Eagle looks very similar to the kind of vitriol that preceded the start of the same exercises last year and led to a steep rise in tensions on the Korean Peninsula. That round of escalation culminated in threats of a nuclear strike on Washington and the flattening of Seoul before the maneuvers ended and both sides went back to their corners.

It appears the first stages of this year’s battle have already begun - though some experts say they don’t think it will be as high-pitched as last year’s.

In the latest of North Korea’s increasingly frequent salvos against the exercises, it said through its state-run media that the United States is building up its military forces in Asia so it can invade the country - formally called the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, or DPRK - and take control of the whole region.

FULL ARTICLE (Associated Press)

Photo: UNC - CNC - USFK/flickr

27 Jan
Park pushes the dream of Korean reunification | Julian Ryall
Speaking in the Swiss ski resort of Davos, on the fringe of the annual World Economic Forum, South Korean President Park Geun-hye told reporters on Wednesday that the melding of North and South Korea into a single nation would prove to be a blessing for both. She said it would also bring peace and prosperity across the region.
"I think unification would be a great benefit for neighboring countries," Park said, indicating that it would trigger massive foreign investment in North Korea, major infrastructure projects and have a dramatic economic knock-one effect in China, Russia, Japan and beyond.
"As unification can provide the northeast Asia region with a fresh growth engine, I think it will be a jackpot not only for South Korea, but also for all neighboring countries," she added.
FULL ARTICLE (Deutsche Welle)
Photo: taylorsloan/flickr

Park pushes the dream of Korean reunification | Julian Ryall

Speaking in the Swiss ski resort of Davos, on the fringe of the annual World Economic Forum, South Korean President Park Geun-hye told reporters on Wednesday that the melding of North and South Korea into a single nation would prove to be a blessing for both. She said it would also bring peace and prosperity across the region.

"I think unification would be a great benefit for neighboring countries," Park said, indicating that it would trigger massive foreign investment in North Korea, major infrastructure projects and have a dramatic economic knock-one effect in China, Russia, Japan and beyond.

"As unification can provide the northeast Asia region with a fresh growth engine, I think it will be a jackpot not only for South Korea, but also for all neighboring countries," she added.

FULL ARTICLE (Deutsche Welle)

Photo: taylorsloan/flickr

24 Sep
South Korea reopens tender for $8bn fighter jet programme | Simon Mundy and Song Jung-a
South Korea will restart an $8bn tender for a new fleet of fighter jets after a three-way race between Boeing, Lockheed Martin and the Eurofighter consortium failed to produce a winner.
The defence ministry’s announcement on Tuesday followed weeks of domestic controversy. The government, under pressure to meet ambitious social spending pledges, had looked set to choose Boeing’s F-15 jet as a cheaper alternative to Lockheed Martin’s more advanced F-35.
FULL ARTICLE (Financial Times)
Photo: Official U.S. Air Force/Flickr

South Korea reopens tender for $8bn fighter jet programme | Simon Mundy and Song Jung-a

South Korea will restart an $8bn tender for a new fleet of fighter jets after a three-way race between Boeing, Lockheed Martin and the Eurofighter consortium failed to produce a winner.

The defence ministry’s announcement on Tuesday followed weeks of domestic controversy. The government, under pressure to meet ambitious social spending pledges, had looked set to choose Boeing’s F-15 jet as a cheaper alternative to Lockheed Martin’s more advanced F-35.

FULL ARTICLE (Financial Times)

Photo: Official U.S. Air Force/Flickr