North Korea Boots Officials from S. Korea

Relations sour as South demands an end to nuclear program
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 27, 2008 1:48 PM CDT
North Korea Boots Officials from S. Korea
South Korean employees wearing North Korean costumes wait customers during the goods fairs from Kaesong joint industrial complex in Seoul, Thursday, March 27, 2008.    (AP Photo)

South Korean officials left North Korea this morning, after receiving their eviction notice from Pyongyang. Relations have soured between the Koreas since the South demanded the North cease its nuclear activities, but the South said it was “undaunted” by the expulsion of its men. “We will deal with this issue in a pragmatic way,” said a government spokesman, without elaborating.

At stake is the burgeoning economic relationship between the two nations. South Korean companies employ 23,000 North Koreans at a complex in Kaesong, for example. So far those facilities haven’t been caught up in the row, but the South has banned all further economic cooperation until Korea cooperates on its nukes. “Time and patience is running out,” said South Korea’s foreign minister. (More North Korea stories.)

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