North Korea is destroying sites at the Mount Kumgang resort area

(CNN) – Once hailed as a symbol of peace in Korea, A floating hotel A resort area is being destroyed by the North Korean government.

Mount Kumgang, whose name is Korean for “diamond,” has been a site for rare moments of reconciliation between the citizens of the two countries, which are still technically at war.

An official from South Korea’s Unification Ministry told CNN that they had detected “disintegrating activity” at multiple sites at Mount Kumgang.

The news comes after months of unconfirmed reports that buildings in the complex had been demolished.

Onjeongak Rest House at the foot of Mount Kumgang, where the much-celebrated reunion of separated families from the South and North has taken place in the past.

It was also mentioned that Hyundai Asan’s office in Kumgang was destroyed just this week. A South Korean-owned company was responsible for managing the tourism sector.

“Mount Kumgang Tours improved inter-Korean reconciliation and served as a focal point for inter-Korean exchanges,” Hyundai Asan spokesperson Park Sung-uk previously told CNN.

The world’s first floating hotel was built in Australia and eventually ended up in Kumgang.

Hyundai Asan Corporation

In addition, North Korea began demolishing the famous Haegumgang Hotel in April. Once a floating luxury resort on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, Hotel Kumgang was relocated and opened to tourists in 2000.

They are closely monitoring whether North Korea will destroy the family reunification center and the Kumgang community center, the official said, though he could not yet confirm the information.

Kumgang Resort, about 30 minutes north of the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), was co-managed by the two Koreas.

It stopped welcoming tourists in 2008 when a North Korean soldier shot and killed a South Korean woman who had crossed the border into the military zone into the Mount Kumgang tourist area.

However, nuclear families continued to reunite there Until 2018.
Since then, the area had fallen into disrepair. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, J Visited Kumgang in 2019It was called “shabby” and “backward”.

North Korea is reportedly planning to replace all structures at Mount Kumgang with new ones, potentially signaling that its government plans to manage and control the resort area without any help from its southern neighbor.

Jacopo Prisco contributed reporting.

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