North-South Military Agreement, De Facto Scrapped: Risk of War?

President Yun Seok-yul has reinstated the suspension of the 9-19 Inter-Korean Military Agreement. This is expected to result in a significant increase in military tensions between the North and South. Let’s take a look at the details together.

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9-19 What is the North-South Military Agreement?

First, let’s talk a little bit about the September 19th Armistice. The agreement, signed on September 19, 2018, by South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, prohibits hostilities in and around the western part of the Korean Northern Limit Line (NLL). The agreement was signed to ease military tensions and build trust between the two Koreas.

Why the suspension?

North Korea’s recent provocations have led to the suspension of the 9-19 military agreement. North Korea has repeatedly violated the agreement by firing coastal artillery, launching missiles beyond the NLL, provoking GP fire, and infiltrating small unmanned aerial vehicles [2]. Most recently, it has continued its unorthodox provocations by sending filth balloons to South Korea [1][3].

Government response

In response, the government has decided to suspend the 9-19 Military Agreement. President Yun Suk-yol reintroduced the proposal at a cabinet meeting on April 4, which will be immediately notified to North Korea and suspended [1][4]. The Department of Defense has stated that this decision restores normalcy to all military activities of our forces along the Military Demarcation Line (MDL) and in the Northwest [2].

North Korean loudspeaker broadcasts resume

The government is also considering resuming loudspeaker broadcasts to North Korea. North Korean loudspeaker broadcasts consist of denouncing the brutality of the North Korean regime and touting the superiority of the South Korean system. It will be used as a powerful psychological response to North Korea’s provocations [3][6].

Looking ahead

The suspension of the 9-19 military agreement is expected to further escalate military tensions between the two Koreas. North Korea is threatening further provocations, and our government will respond decisively. With the risk of an accidental military conflict between North and South Korea likely to increase, a more cautious approach is needed to ensure peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula [4][7].

Content sources

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