North Korea has responded to South Korea’s loud propaganda music incursions across the Demilitarized Zone by sending balloons laden with propaganda messages and waste to the south.
The balloons were loaded with used toilet paper, tissues, cigarette butts and propaganda leaflets.
The Telegraph reports:
The South Korean authorities were so concerned at the contents of balloons wafting over the heavily fortified Demilitarised Zone that they initially feared a biochemical attack, the JoongAng Daily reported.
South Korea resumed launches of balloons carrying propaganda into the North in the days after Pyongyang carried out its fourth underground nuclear test on January 6. Seoul also approved the resumption of broadcasts of pop music and propaganda via loudspeakers into the North.
Within a week, Pyongyang began to retaliate by floating balloons into the South. Fitted with a timer and a small explosive device, the balloons are designed to drop their payload in the South and spread crude propaganda messages.
Some of the estimated 1 million leaflets demand, “Stop the anti-North psychological warfare broadcasts that light the fuse of war“, while others accuse Park Geun-hye, the South Korean leader, of worsening tensions on the peninsula.
“Knock out the gang of Park Geun-hye, who aggravated North-South relations by resuming anti-North psychological broadcasts”, another leaflet proclaims.
The messages have become increasingly crude, however, and now describe Mrs Park as “political filth”.
South Korean authorities have more recently been called out to deal with balloons that have not exploded in order to release their propaganda messages. Dozens of the balloons have instead landed in fields south of the border, triggering fears they contained biological or chemical agents.
“When we opened up a bundle that had dropped on the ground, we found plastic bags filled with leaflets and mixed with trash”, a military official told the JoongAng Daily.
“We were concerned that North Korea could have sent biochemical substances to harm our people, but after analysing the contents it was just trash”, he said.
“In some of the bundles, there were cigarette butts, tissues and daily waste”, a police officer said, adding that it included used toilet paper.
A government spokesman described the North’s psychological warfare methods as “immature”.
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