North Korea Severs Ties With South

Irate over 'smear campaign' in battleship's sinking
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 25, 2010 10:06 AM CDT
North Korea Severs Ties With South
South Korean activists burn a North Korean flag with a picture of Kim Jong Il during a rally in Seoul, South Korea, Tuesday, May 25, 2010.   (AP Photo/ Lee Jin-man)

North Korea says it will sever all ties and communication with Seoul as punishment for what it calls a "smear campaign" over the sinking of a South Korean warship. North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency quoted the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea as saying late today that Pyongyang would also expel all South Koreans working at a joint industrial park in the border town of Kaesong.

The North flatly denies involvement and has warned such retaliation would mean war. Today, the North's military claimed dozens of South Korean navy ships violated the countries' disputed western sea border earlier this month and threatened to take "practical" military measures in response, according to the official Korean Central News Agency. South Korea's military had no immediate response other than to say that North Korea routinely makes similar accusations. (More North Korea stories.)

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