The Wall Street Journal: South Korea stops blaring K-Pop, propaganda across border

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SEOUL — South Korea’s Defense Ministry halted propaganda broadcasts across its heavily guarded border with North Korea, a move it said was a show of good faith to Pyongyang ahead of an inter-Korean summit later this week.

A Defense Ministry spokesman said Monday that broadcasts were halted at midnight local time. The broadcasts, which blare across the border via high-wattage loudspeakers, include the latest South Korean pop songs, information on South Korea’s higher living standards and criticism of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

Read: Trump to North Korea: Nuclear dismantlement must happen before sanctions lifted

“We hope this decision will contribute towards ending mutual criticism and propaganda activities, and result in creating a mood of peace,” a ministry statement said. North Korea didn’t immediately react to the move.

Seoul’s latest offering follows a Pyongyang statement, relayed by state media last week, that the North would shut down a nuclear test site and suspend test launches of intercontinental missiles. The statement, however, didn’t contain an explicit vow that the North would give up its nuclear arsenal. The two Koreas also set up a new direct phone line last week between Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in — a first, according to South Korea’s presidential office.

An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.

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