SEOUL, November 30. /TASS/. The Ministry of National Defense of the Republic of Korea has notified the authorities that it is necessary to suspend completely the inter-Korean agreement on reducing military tensions of September 19, 2018, Defense Ministry spokesperson Jeon Ha-kyu told a news briefing.
"The Defense Ministry has repeatedly explained that there are various restrictions on military operations because of the agreement. We have notified the relevant authorities we are of the opinion that a full suspension of the agreement is necessary," Jeon said. The Republic of Korea had earlier announced partial suspension. Current Defense Minister Shin Won-sik said it was necessary to scrap the agreement altogether.
"As North Korea has officially announced it will scrap the agreement and is blatantly restoring military measures, we will take corresponding measures in the context of bolstering military readiness to protect our people," Jeon added.
The defense official also said that South Korean guard posts were completely eliminated five years ago and were now unusable. Under the agreement, the Republic of Korea and the DPRK each destroyed ten posts on the border, but preserved one each as historical sites. On November 27, the South Korean military said the DPRK was in the process of rebuilding the guard posts. The Yonhap news agency quoted sources as saying that the military was considering the possibility of restoring the remaining post.
The South Korean authorities "pulled the last remaining safety ring with its own hands" by announcing the partial suspension of the agreement to reduce military tensions with the DPRK, Korean Central News Agency has said in a commentary.
As the commentary points out, "the south Korean puppets found fault with our recent launch of a reconnaissance satellite for legitimate right to self-defense and announced the nullification of some articles of the North-South military agreement as if they had earnestly waited for that moment."
The agreement envisaged a number of measures to reduce the risk of military-to-military clashes.
"A sinister intention is hidden in their reckless moves of pulling out the last 'safety ring' with their own hands, devising clumsy 'measures' of nullification contrary to logic and reason for 'coping with' our reconnaissance satellite launch," the commentary reads.
As the news agency explains, the South Korean authorities "keenly needed a way out to maintain the remainder of their doomed political life and curry favor with their masters" amid public outrage "at their submission to the outside forces and anti-popular politics." "It is the same old trick of the South Korean puppet conservatives to make desperate efforts to find a way out in the anti-DPRK confrontation moves, talking more loudly about 'insecurity' and 'threat' from the DPRK whenever they face a 'ruling crisis'," KCNA writes.
The agency recalled that in 2022, South Korea and the US conducted more than 250 different military exercises to practice a pre-emptive strike against the DPRK. This year, South Korea has made a major contribution to the expansion and scale of the confrontation with the DPRK, the KCNA notes.
On November 21, the DPRK successfully launched its first reconnaissance satellite, Mallygyong-1, with a Chollima-1 carrier rocket. In response, on November 22, the Republic of Korea announced partial suspension of the inter-Korean agreement on de-escalation. This measure concerned no-fly zones. In turn, on November 23, the DPRK Defense Ministry said that they no longer considered themselves bound by the agreement and would resume measures prohibited by the document. According to Seoul, the DPRK started to restore frontline guard posts in the demilitarized zone.