South Korea - North Korea: The two Koreas agreed to restore the military hotline, according to a press briefing by the South Korean Unification Ministry.
Seoul and Pyongyang agreed to restore the line on Thursday in a subcommittee meeting to discuss restarting the Kaesong Industrial Zone. Restoration of the military hotline was one of Seoul's conditions for normalizing operations at Kaesong.
After the press briefing, the ministry said by phone that the military hotline was reopened as of 10:51 a.m. local time after testing the telephone lines. A Red Cross hotline at Panmunjom was restored in June.
Comment: The military hotline is important because it is the communications link used to coordinate cross-border civilian traffic to and from Kaesong. North Korea cut it during the tension in March. This is another benchmark in resuming production operations at Kaesong.
Republic of Korea: South Korean security authorities on Thursday arrested a leftist member of the National Assembly for plotting a pro-North Korean rebellion in South Korea in the event of another Korean War.
'It's a fabrication by the National Intelligence Service,' Lee Seok-ki shouted at a police station in Suwon, a city just south of Seoul, before being driven to a detention facility.
Comment: National Assembly member Lee is accused of having led a pro-North Korean subversive organization and operation in South Korea. The purpose of the group was to foment an uprising during a crisis with the North that would overthrow the South Korean government, install a revolutionary government in Seoul and invite a North Korean invasion to restore civil order in the South.
That is classic communist doctrine. For example that is the scenario in which Soviet forces invaded Afghanistan in 1979. After one government's overthrow, they were invited in by the new leadership. That scenario has always been a key element in the North Korean war plan.
South Koreans are astonished that Lee and his supporters still remain true believers to the North's propaganda line that the North Korean system is superior to that of South Korea in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. They also are astonished that a North Korean sympathizer could win election to the National Assembly with no vetting of his views towards North Korea.
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