ROK, DPRK, UN Command agree to withdraw firearms, guard posts from JSA in border area
The Republic of Korea (ROK), the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) and the United Nations Command agreed on Monday to withdraw firearms and guard posts by Thursday from the Joint Security Area (JSA) in the inter-Korean border area, Seoul's defense ministry said.
The agreement was reached after the second consultation on disarming the JSA was held at the Freedom House, an ROK building in the border village of Panmunjom inside the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ). The first one was held last week.
From October 1, soldiers from the two Koreas conducted a 20-day operation to remove landmines inside the JSA, which was set up right after the 1950-53 Korean War ended with armistice.
During the second consultation, the two Koreas and the UN Command agreed to pull firearms and guard posts out of the JSA by October 25, and to conduct a joint verification for the next two days.
The three parties jointly confirmed the official completion of the landmine removal works in the JSA, according to the ministry.
The disarmament of the JSA was agreed upon by defense chiefs of the two Koreas during the Pyongyang summit in September between ROK's President Moon Jae-in and DPRK's top leader Kim Jong Un.
Following the disarmament, the ROK and the DPRK planned to station a patrol of non-armed 35 soldiers each, including five officers, inside the JSA.
(Cover: A ROK soldier patrols in front of the Joint Security Area conference room in the border village of Panmunjom between the ROK and the DPRK at the Demilitarized Zone, October 14, 2017. /VCG Photo )