Anchor: The Unification Ministry reasserted that factories at the inter-Korean Gaeseong Industrial Complex belong to South Korean companies. A ministry official said requests by the companies to visit the industrial park will be carefully reviewed.
Bae Joo-yon has the details.
Report: The Unification Ministry says factories and equipment in the Gaeseong Industrial Complex belong to South Korean companies, and that North Korea should not infringe their property rights.
South Korea shut down the joint venture factory zone in February of last year to protest Pyongyang's fourth nuclear weapons test.
However, media reports say that the North has been secretly running 19 clothing factories there for at least six months, mainly for domestic consumption.
A Unification Ministry official says the government has not seen any substantial movements to indicate the North is actually operating the factories apart from traffic lights and the intermittent movement of commuter buses.
The official says the government will carefully consider any request by South Korean companies to visit the Gaeseong zone to confirm whether or not the North is operating their equipment.
South Korean companies with operations at the complex plan to hold an emergency meeting on Wednesday to review their position on the matter.
However, it remains to be seen if the visit will actually materialize as it would require the North’s consent.
On Friday, the North Korean propaganda portal Uriminzokkiri said clothing factories in Gaeseong will run more vigorously than ever, suggesting that the factories are in operation.
Bae Joo-yon, KBS World Radio News.