North Korea restores communication with South Korea

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Following months after it terminate a cross-border hotline, North Korea has restored communication lines with the South Korea.

This comes days after the country’s leader Kim Jong-un announced he was ready to restore communication as a conditional olive branch.

But Pyongyang, capital of North Korea, also said the restoration of their relationship was conditional on the “attitude of South Korean authorities”.

Also, North Korea has recently been ramping up its military tests.

It has fired four missiles in less than a month – a clue that it has no motive of impeding its arms development.

South Korea’s unification ministry on Monday morning said officials from both Koreas made their first phone call since August.

“With the restoration of the South-North communication line, the government evaluates that a foundation for recovering inter-Korean relations has been provided,” the ministry said in a statement.

Communication hotlines between the two sides have been terminated – and restored – several times.

After a failed summit in 2020 between the North and South, Pyongyang blew up an inter-Korean border office that had been erected to enhance communications.

In the same year, North Korea disconnected all communication lines with the South, including a hotline between both leaders and military communication channels after tensions worsened.

The hotline was shortly restored this August but cut again after South Korea partook in joint military exercises with the US.

North and South Korea are still technically at war because no peace pact was achieved when the Korean War ceased in 1953.

The North has frequently condemned South Korea of double standards over military activities.

Recently, South Korea tested its first submarine-launched ballistic missile, which it said was needed as deterrence against North Korea’s “provocations”.

The US has been calling for North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons, and Pyongyang’s relationship with President Joe Biden’s administration has so far been fraught with tension.

However, Pyongyang appears determined to prove it will continue to develop new weapons systems, saying they are required for its own self-defence.

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