SEOUL (AFP) – South Korean activists threatened on Tuesday to sneak copies of the Hollywood comedy “The Interview” into North Korea if Pyongyang rejects Seoul’s offer of dialogue.
The North has already warned one activist, Park Sang-Hak, that he would “pay for his crimes in blood” if copies of the movie about a CIA plot to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un made it across the border.
But Park said his group, Fighters for a Free North Korea (FFNK), which balloon-launched 100,000 anti-Pyongyang leaflets over the border Monday night, was prepared to face down the threats.
“If the North fails to respond sincerely to Seoul’s offer for talks… we will send copies of ‘The Interview’ so feared by Kim Jong-Un,” Park told reporters in Seoul.
In order to give time for the response, the activist said he would suspend any further balloon launches until after the Lunar New Year on February 19.
Seoul has proposed holding high-level talks with the North with a view to organising a reunion around the Lunar New Year period for families divided by the 1950-53 Korean war.
Park said copies of “The Interview” were “intentionally” excluded from the leaflet packages launched overnight Monday in an unpublicised operation near the border town of Paju.
The US-based Human Rights Foundation, which supports the FFNK activities, said the group intended to put 100,000 copies of the movie into the North this year on a rolling basis.
“Some people think it’s funny. Some people think it’s not funny… But almost everyone we’ve spoken to said this film in North Korea will create a lot of healthy discussion and debate among North Korean people,” Thor Halvorssen, the head of the HRF, said.
North Korea, which refers to the activists as “human scum”, has long condemned the ballon launches and in recent months has stepped up its demands for Seoul to ban the practice entirely.