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Half of S. Koreans oppose spread of anti-NK leaflets: poll

2014/10/01 15:02

SEOUL, Oct. 1 (Yonhap) -- Nearly half of South Koreans believe their government should block the scattering of anti-North Korea leaflets into the communist neighbor, a poll showed Wednesday.

According to the survey of 1,200 adults nationwide by the Institute for Peace and Unification Studies at Seoul National University, 49.1 percent of the respondents were in favor of the view that the government needs to take measures against the spread of leaflets by some activists.

Only 14.9 percent disapproved of any government intervention, while 36.1 percent were neutral.

The survey was conducted from July 1-22 and it has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.

In the previous survey last year, 44.5 percent supported the government's action.

The new findings came as the conservative Park Geun-hye administration is apparently in a dilemma over the leaflet issue.

The North has pressured it to prevent anti-Pyongyang activists from flying huge balloons carrying propaganda leaflets across the border.

The North said it would not return to high-level talks with the South unless the matter is addressed.

The South's government has reiterated that it has no legal ground to bar such a civilian campaign associated with the freedom of speech.

Meanwhile, a growing number of South Koreans regard North Korea as a potential partner for cooperation, according to the poll.

The percentage of those who see the North as an enemy dropped to 13.9 percent from 16.4 percent a year earlier.

In contrast, 45.3 percent said North Korea can be a cooperative partner, a remarkable rise from 40.4 percent recorded in last year's survey.

lcd@yna.co.kr

leechidong@gmail.com

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