Go to contents

North Korean Troops Get Southern Gear

Posted January. 20, 2006 04:53,   


South Korean communication devices for security use, including portable radios, have been supplied to North Korea for the first time.

The Ministry of Unification and an industry source said on January 19 that radio communication sets, CCTVs and radio relay equipment manufactured by UNIMO Technology, a small South Korean communications device manufacturer, were supplied to North Korea through Hyundai Asan and installed at a Customs, Immigration and Quarantine point inside the South-North joint Gaesong industrial complex on January 13.

Portable radios are classified as strategic supplies, along with weapons, computers, and aerial electronic products, under international trade law, inter-Korean exchange and cooperation law, and international export control system law. That means that it is prohibited to send them to North Korea. But the portable radios in this case were delivered to North Korea on the condition that they only be used within the Gaesong complex.

The devices will be used by North Korean soldiers at the industrial complex. It is the first instance of South Korea supplying North Korean soldiers with ‘strategic equipment.’

An official at Hyundai Asan said, “It is prohibited to deliver supplies controlled for military purposes, like portable radios or security devices, to North Korea. But we sent them for civilian use because Hyundai Asan is building a CIQ point in North Korea.”

Jeong Jin-hyun, the president of UNIMO Technology, said, “I think that our products were favored because they are the only products that have explanations in Korean on the liquid crystal displays, and we manufacture a set of related devices, including antennas and radio relay equipment.”

Jae-Young Kim jaykim@donga.com