Kim Yo-jong, North Korea’s head of Propaganda and Agitation and sister of Kim Jong-un, invited South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the “earliest date” to visit Pyongyang at her brother’s request.
Dictator Kim selected sister Kim Yo-jong as his special envoy to the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, the first member of the tyrannical Kim family to step foot in South Korea since the country’s partition. In addition to attending the Opening Ceremonies and a special luncheon for North Korean delegates on Saturday, Kim Yo-jong delivered a letter from her brother to President Moon.
According to a South Korean government spokeswoman, Kim handed Moon the letter and “orally delivered chairman Kim Jong-un’s invitation (for Moon) to visit the North at a time convenient to him, saying he is willing to meet President Moon Jae-in at the earliest date possible.”
Moon, a leftist who has expressed a desire for peace talks with the Kim regime, reportedly replied, “Let us make it happen by creating the necessary conditions in the future.”
It is unlikely North Korea could guarantee Moon’s safety during a visit to the country, arguably the most repressive state in the world. North Korea has an extensive history of abducting both South Korean and Japanese nationals and turning them into spies. Pyongyang also makes a habit of abducting tourists and journalists from the free world and using them as ransom pawns. Such a move against a head of state, however, would be unprecedented.
Following her departure from South Korea on Sunday, Kim Yo-jong issued a statement complimenting South Korea as not feeling “unfamiliar.” The head of her delegation, ornamental head of government Kim Yong-nam, also issued a statement applauding South Korea for “successfully” opening the Olympics.
“We believe that the games will pave the way for the two sides’ reconciliation, and stronger inter-Korean ties, and furthermore for Koreans’ unity and unification,” Kim Yong-nam reportedly said.
North Korea’s state media – which, as head of Propaganda and Agitation, Kim Yo-jong controls – abandoned its typical belligerent rhetoric for at least one article following the return of the high-level delegation to Pyongyang. Moon, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported, expressed “the will to take one step after another for the common prosperity of the south and the north in close cooperation with each other, saying that the inter-Korean relations should be mended by the parties concerned at any cost as indicated by Chairman Kim Jong Un in his New Year Address.”
“Moon Jae In warmly greeted the DPRK delegation at the main lobby of Chongwadae, exchanging greetings with it, and had photo sessions with Kim Yong Nam and Kim Yo Jong respectively,” the KCNA report claimed. “Then Kim Yong Nam and Kim Yo Jong had a warm talk with Moon Jae In on the first floor of Chongwadae [Blue House, Seoul’s presidential palace].”
Many South Koreans have rejected Moon’s overtures to the North Korean regime, which has engaged in numerous acts of terrorism against the south and continues to threaten the use of nuclear weapons on a routine basis. South Korean conservative Liberty Korea Party spokesman Chang Je-won urged Moon to avoid visiting North Korea: “unless it is premised on denuclearization, would be nothing more than a congratulatory delegation celebrating (the North’s) nuclear development and would amount to an enemy-benefiting act.”
South Korean protesters, meanwhile, once again took the streets to burn North Korean flags and tear up photos of Kim Jong-un. Yonhap estimated 800 protesters took to the streets of Seoul on Saturday, rallying against the presence of Kim Yo-jong in their presidential palace. At least one protester wore a mask of U.S. President Donald Trump.
“There is a faction that tries to turn this country communist. If we don’t stop it, we will be starved or tortured to death under the rule of Kim Jong-un,” one protester told Yonhap.