A South Korean activist said Friday he launched 500,000 propaganda leaflets by balloon into North Korea this week in defiance of a contentious new law that criminalizes such actions.
If confirmed, Park Sang-hak’s action would be the first known violation of the law that punishes anti-Pyongyang leafleting with up to three years in prison or a fine of 30 million won ($27,040). The law that took effect in March has invited criticism South Korea is sacrificing freedom of expression to improve ties with rival North Korea, which has repeatedly protested the leafleting.
Police stations in frontline Gyeonggi and Gangwon provinces said they couldn’t immediately confirm if Park sent balloons from their areas, which Park has used in the past and said he used in two launches this week. Cha Duck Chul, a deputy spokesman at Seoul’s Unification Ministry, said the government would handle the case in line with the objective of the law, though police and military authorities were