Kim Yo-jong, tipped to be North Korea's second in command after her brother Kim Jong-un, on Thursday lashed out at South Korea's anti-regime leaflet-dropping.
As the first deputy director of the Propaganda and Agitation Department of North Korea's Worker's Party, Kim threatened to rip up the military agreement signed by the two Korean leaders in 2018, if South Korea fails to act.
Not only that, but the regime could completely withdraw from Gaeseong Industrial Complex, stop tours to Mount Geumgangsan, or shut down the inter-Korean joint liaison office.
But experts say her statement, published in the regime's state newspaper, the Rodong Sinmun, is more than just a threat.
"It can also translate into saying that they are still open to inter-Korean relations. Kim Yo-jong laying things outthat they could scrap the military agreement, the joint liaison office, and Gaeseong Industrial Complex, also means that they are still valid. And plus, for North Korea, a regime going through economic difficulties, inter-Korean relations are a must."
In response, Seoul said that it stands firm on maintaining the Panmunjeom Declaration and the military agreement.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Unification said it has already been looking at ways to ban leaflet campaigns and that they must stop due to safety concerns.
"Most of the leaflets end up dropping in the South, contaminating regions near the border and deteriorating living conditions for residents. Such acts that threatens the lives and welfare of people living near the border must stop."
But under the current law that protects freedom of speech, the government could find it difficult to prevent future leaflet campaigns.
Hong Yoo, Arirang News.