Mon, Apr 16, 2012 - Page 4 News List

Activists in South Korea launch anti-North leaflets

AFP, Seoul

South Korean activists launched leaflets across the border to the North yesterday criticizing the Kim dynasty on the day North Korea marks the centenary of the birth of its founding leader.

Ten activists in Imjingak park near the border sent 10 helium balloons containing 200,000 leaflets that denounce the ruling Kim family for staging a costly rocket launch while its people starve.

In the week long lead up to the April 15 centenary of the birth of Kim Il-sung, which culminated in a massive military parade yesterday, the North launched what it claimed was a satellite-carrying rocket.

The launch on Friday, estimated by Seoul to have cost the North about US$850 million, failed after the rocket exploded about two minutes after blast off.

“The spending for the launch could have fed 20 million people [in the North] for an entire year” read a banner attached to a giant balloon, which also contained a thousand US$1 bills.

“The nation’s three top traitors: Kim Il-sung, Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un” read another banner, referring to the North’s previous and current leaders, while another stated: ““Let’s exterminate Kim Jong-un’s dictatorship.”

Kim Jong-un took over from his late father and longtime ruler, Kim Jong-il, after his death in December last year.

The young leader has practically assumed all the top party, military and state posts previously held by his father, who had also taken over from his own father in 1994, completing the three-generation power succession.

Last week he was appointed as the “first secretary” of the ruling Workers’ Party and “first chairman” of the powerful National Defense Commission, the nation’s top decision making body.

The North, which tightly controls news from outside, has angrily responded to past balloon launches and threatened to fire across the heavily fortified border to stop them.

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