Less than 24 hours after South Korea demanded a full explanation from North Korea over the fatal shooting of a South Korean national earlier this week Pyeongyang has sent notification to Seoul with what it says are the results of an investigation.
The North also sent a message from its leader, Kim Jong-un, who said he feels sorry for the incident, which he called “unsavory.”
For details, we connect to our presidential correspondent Kim Min-ji.
Min-ji, fill us in.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has apologized for what he called the “unsavory” shooting of the South Korean man.
That came in a formal notice this morning addressed to Seoul’s top office from the North’s United Front Department, which deals with inter-Korean affairs.
It came a day after South Korea demanded an explanation for the shooting and that the North take responsible measures.
Here’s South Korea’s national security advisor.

“North Korea conveyed the message that Chairman Kim Jong-un feels very sorry for greatly disappointing President Moon Jae-in and the South Korean people with the unsavory incident in North Korean waters rather than helping them amid their suffering from the coronavirus.”

The North said the “unidentified” man crossed the western sea border illegally floating on an unspecified kind of material, and did not respond “sincerely” to verbal security checks.
North Korean troops, it said, later fired two blanks, and they believed the man then attempted to flee.
Then, they fired more than 10 shots from a distance of about 40 to 50 meters in accordance with a manual for maritime border security.
After firing those shots, they inspected the floating material but found only a large amount of blood, and not his body.
The North said they burned the floating material as part of emergency quarantine measures.
It also said it will be taking measures to prevent the recurrence of such an incident and take extra care and necessary safety measures so that the case doesn’t hurt the trust and respect built between the two Koreas.
When asked whether the top office sees the North’s message as meeting all its demands that is to provide a full explanation, an apology and measures to prevent such incident from happening again it said that further analysis is needed.
For one thing, North Korea’s account of what happened to the dead man’s body that it was lost contradicts the South Korean military’s announcement that the North burned it.

I understand there’s also been a recent exchange of letters between the leaders of the two Koreas. Tell us about that.

Yes, the top office said that the exchange took place earlier in September.
It said President Moon sent a letter first expressing his respect for Chairman Kim who has been at the forefront of dealing with COVID-19, the prolonged rainy season and a string of typhoons.
He expressed regret that the two Koreas cannot help each other in these trying times, adding that he hopes all Koreans are able to overcome these difficulties soon and wished for the well-being of Kim and his family.
Just days later, Chairman Kim sent a reply thanking Moon for the letter and his warm wishes.
Kim, too, said he wishes for the well-being and happiness of all Koreans and expressed concern for Moon’s health.
He added that he hope the hardship of this year passes by as soon as possible.
Back to you Devin.

Reporter : kimmj@arirang.com


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