An industrial complex near Kaesong, North Korea has been the last line of tangible cooperation and communication between North & South Korea. Friday, South Korea shut off it’s water and electricity.
This series of 124 South Korean owned buildings, employed 54,000 North Koreans and produced clothes, shoes and other consumer goods. The factory was part of 2004’s “Sunshine policy” that the South pursued in an effort to open up dialogue and relations with Pyongyang.
Workers were payed about $160 a week, but the money was payed to the state and not to the people, leading many South Korean leaders to accuse the almost $120 million annually of going to pay for their weapons program.
The 280 South Koreans that were working their were expelled immediately with nothing but their personal belongings.
To put into perspective just how big of a move this is – in 2010, the North sunk a South Korean naval ship, killing 46, the complex remained functional. The reaction from the North’s “Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea” was harsh, calling the South Korean President Park Geun-hye “a traitor for all ages” and calling the move:
“an end to the last lifeline of the north-south relations … and a dangerous declaration of a war driving the situation in the Korean Peninsula to the brink of a war.”
Will the North and South go to war in 2016? Share your thoughts in the comments below!