South Korea seeks to facilitate access to North Korean public television to “foster understanding”

South Korean authorities reported Friday that the government is seeking to facilitate access to North Korean public television and news channels in an attempt to “foster understanding” between the two countries in the midst of rising tensions.

South Korean Unification Minister Kwon Young Se has thus indicated that the government plans to “gradually open the door” to North Korean channels, as he explained during a parliamentary session.

“We will allow ordinary people to access North Korean channels given the difficulty for North Korea to take similar measures,” Kwon said before indicating that “in the process, a consensus will be built on this issue through consultations in the National Assembly.”

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Currently, South Korean media can access North Korean state broadcasts via satellite, something that the public cannot do. The authorities will also explore the possibility of “sports exchanges” in preparation for the Asian Games scheduled for next year.

Kwon said his ministry “will continue to seek international support for its bold initiative aimed at helping Pyongyang improve its economy in exchange for steps toward denuclearization.

“We will not wait passively for North Korea to respond. Instead, we will use pressure and sanctions to get it to abandon its nuclear program and return to dialogue,” he said.

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