South may preserve one border post as cultural property

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South may preserve one border post as cultural property

South Korea’s government is considering registering a border guard post as a cultural property, a military source said Thursday.

The facility is among the 11 guard posts subject to the “trial pullout” agreement, which is part of a broader inter-Korean military accord last year aimed at reducing border tensions, preventing accidental clashes and building trust.

Seoul and Pyongyang initially agreed to demolish 11 guard posts each in the demilitarized zone but decided later to keep one apiece - unarmed - in light of their historical value.

“The Cultural Heritage Administration has sent us a written request for its staff’s visit to the guard post on the east coast next month,” an Army official said, referring to the administration’s plan for an onsite check of its cultural value.

“The army plans to consult with the United Nations Command to give them access to the DMZ,” he added. The command, an enforcer of the armistice agreement that halted the 1950-53 Korean War, oversees activities within the DMZ.

The two Koreas’ defense ministers signed the Comprehensive Military Accord during President Moon Jae-in’s visit to Pyongyang for his third summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang in September last year.

The deal revolves around a series of confidence-building and conventional arms control measures, including disarming the Joint Security Area in the DMZ and setting up air, ground and maritime buffer zones.

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