Updated: 10/04/2013 15:16 | By Agence France-Presse

S. Korea activists launch anti-North leaflets

South Korean activists launched about 200,000 anti-Pyongyang leaflets across the border Friday, despite past North Korean threats to shell the "human scum" participating in such events.


S. Korea activists launch anti-North leaflets

North Korean defectors prepare to release helium balloons carrying leaflets during an anti-North Korea rally in Paju, north of Seoul on October 4, 2013

About 40 activists, including North Korean defectors, shouted slogans calling for the overthrow of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un as they released helium balloons carrying the leaflets.

The event at a park in the border town of Paju was monitored by a strong police presence.

South Korean police have enforced bans on similar launches in the past, citing concerns from local residents about possible North Korean retaliation.

As an enticement to North Koreans to read the leaflets urging them to rise up against the Kim regime, the balloons carried 1,000 US one-dollar bills.

"We came here to criticise Kim Jong-Un for turning down a fervent request from separated families to meet their relatives," Park Sang-Hak, a leading organiser of Friday's event, told AFP.

A scheduled reunion last month between family members separated by the 1950-53 Korean War was cancelled at the last moment by Pyongyang.

Park's group had planned a similar leaflet exercise a year ago but it was prevented by police after the North Korean military said it would respond with a "merciless" strike on the protest site.

Planned launches in April, May and June were also stopped.

There were no specific threats this time, although the North's top military body referred to the leafleting programme in a blistering attack Friday on the policies of South Korean President Park Geun-Hye.

"She should not forget that it is an unpardonable act of treachery... to instigate human scum to scatter leaflets," said a spokesman for the national defence commission.

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