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S Korean group floats balloons toward North amid animosities

7/7/2022 13:29
        A South Korea activist said Thursday he launched more huge balloons carrying COVID-19 relief items toward North Korea, days after the North vowed to sternly deal with such activities and made a highly questionable claim they were a source of the virus.
        
        South Korean experts doubt North Korea's moves to blame South Korean balloons and say the intent might be to incite anti-South Korea sentiments and ease public complaints over its handling of the outbreak. The coronavirus is spread by people in close contact who inhale airborne droplets, and the expert consensus is that the spread of the virus from surfaces is virtually impossible.
        
        Park Sang-hak, a North Korean defector-turned-activist, said his group floated 20 balloons carrying 20,000 masks and tens of thousands of vitamin C and fever-reducing tablets from a South Korean border town on Wednesday. He said he sent similar aid items by balloon across the inter-Korean border twice last month.
        
        Park previously flew balloons to distribute anti-North Korea propaganda leaflets, U.S. one-dollar bills and USB sticks containing information about the outside world. But he said he'll now focus on sending medical relief items because North Koreans urgently need them.
        



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