SEOUL – South Korea urged North Korea on Saturday to additional examine the deadly capturing of a South Korean fisheries official and steered it may very well be an unprecedented joint probe by the 2 sides, as public and political outrage over the killing grew.
The transfer got here as a uncommon apology from North Korean chief Kim Jong Un seems to have failed to appease criticism over the Moon Jae-in administration’s dealing with of the accident.
After a Nationwide Safety Council assembly Friday night, South Korea’s presidential workplace stated it could name for a joint probe into the case with North Korea if wanted, saying there have been discrepancies in accounts of the accident from the 2 sides.
South Korea’s navy stated on Thursday that the North’s troopers killed the person, doused his physique in gasoline and set it on fireplace close to the maritime border.
However the North Korean authorities stated in a message on Friday that its troopers shot the “unlawful intruder” and denied burning his physique.
The 2 Koreas haven’t carried out joint probes into earlier accidents, together with the loss of life of a South Korean vacationer who was shot on the North’s mountain resort of Kumgang in 2008 and the North’s bombing of Yeonpyeong Island, which killed 4 South Koreans, in 2010. The 2 Koreas have been technically at struggle for the reason that 1950-53 Korean Battle led to a truce.
“An opportunity of a joint probe is low. How on earth can we examine the North Korean navy?,” stated Yang Moo-jin, a professor on the College of North Korean Research in Seoul.
The North has tightened border controls because of the COVID-19 outbreak, which additional complicates the prospect of the joint investigation, he stated.
“Given Kim rapidly provided a uncommon apology, there’s a risk of an change of written questions and solutions between the 2 Koreas,” he stated.
Within the message, Kim Jong Un was quoted as providing an apology for disappointing Moon and the South Korean individuals.
The primary South Korean opposition Folks Energy Social gathering stated on Saturday Kim’s apology was not real, calling on the Moon authorities to ship the case to the Worldwide Legal Court docket.
The Moon administration faces an intense political backlash over the way it responded to the incident, which coincided with a renewed push by the president for engagement with Pyongyang.
Critics questioned why the navy didn’t try to save lots of him regardless of allegedly recognizing him six hours earlier than he was shot useless.
“Peace is necessary in inter-Korean relations, however crucial factor is the lives of our individuals. Our individuals had been shot by North Korea and why is there no such motion as “Korean lives matter” in South Korea?,” stated Thae Yong Ho, a former North Korean deputy ambassador to London who defected to the South, and have become a lawmaker.
“I’m depressed. Why are we weak in entrance of North Korea,” he stated at a gathering of a parliamentary process pressure to analyze the case.
The maritime ministry official was reported lacking whereas on obligation on a fisheries boat close to the island of Yeonpyeong near South Korea’s maritime border.
South Korea’s navy stated the person was apparently making an attempt to defect to the North, however his brother refuted the claims, saying that he should have had an accident. The North’s message didn’t point out whether or not he was making an attempt to defect or not, saying the person stated he was from South Korea.