N. Korea returns S. Korean man via Panmunjom

December 26, 2014
South and North Korean troops stand guard at the neutral border village of Panmunjom. (Yonhap file photo)

South and North Korean troops stand guard at the neutral border village of Panmunjom. (Yonhap file photo)

SEOUL (Yonhap) — North Korea on Friday repatriated a South Korean man accused of illegal entry, Seoul’s unification ministry said.

The 52-year-old, identified only by his surname Ma, was sent back to the South through the truce village of Panmunjom, it said.

“The government will proceed with medical check-ups for him and work to confirm the reason for, and method of, his entry into the North,” Park Soo-jin, the ministry’s deputy spokeswoman, said at a press briefing.

North Korea said Ma entered the North illegally in late November.

Pyongyang’s repatriation of him is apparently a routine humanitarian move. In a similar case, the North returned a South Korean man in September.

Earlier this week, the South sent a North Korean fisherman back home after he was found on a drifting vessel in the East Sea.

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