UN Command was unaware repatriated North Koreans wanted to defect in 2019: Seoul

The U.N. Command (UNC) did not know that two North Korean fishermen repatriated in Nov. 2019 had expressed their desire to defect when it allowed South Korean officials to access Panmunjom for the handover, Seoul’s unification minister said Tuesday.

Kwon Young-se said the lack of prior notice meant UNC officials were caught off guard when one of the North Koreans resisted repatriation at the border, a moment captured in photos and video released earlier this month.

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