Activists launch anti-N Korea leaflets on key anniversary

Activists launch anti-N Korea leaflets on key anniversary
Balloons carrying anti-North Korea leaflets released at a park in the north of Seoul.

SEOUL - South Korean activists on Friday launched leaflets into North Korea condemning the "dictatorship" of leader Kim Jong-Un, who has not been seen in public for more than a month.

Dozens of members of the Seoul-based Fighters for a Free North Korea sent around 200,000 leaflets across the heavily-fortified border attached to 10 giant, gas-filled balloons.

Seoul allowed the exercise, which coincided with the 69th anniversary of North Korea's ruling party, to go ahead despite warnings from Pyongyang of "catastrophic" consequences.

The leaflets criticised the repressive rule of the ruling Kim family and called for a rebellion by those suffering inside a "living hell." "Rise up against the hereditary dictatorship of Kim Jong-Un!" said a slogan emblazoned on one balloon.

South Korean activists - many of them defectors from the isolated North - have been carrying out similar leaflet launches for years.

At times of heightened cross-border tension, the South Korean authorities have stopped the launches going ahead for fear of retaliation.

Last month, North Korea sent a rare message to the South Korean president's office, demanding an end to the leafleting.

Kim Jong-Un, believed to be 30 or 31, has not been seen since September 3 when he attended a music concert with his wife in Pyongyang.

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