South and North Korea resume maritime communication

Seoul: The two Koreas on Sunday resumed maritime communication, as part of agreements to facilitate the thaw in ties and denuclearization of the peninsula, defence officials said here.

This is the first time in 10 years that military fleets of the two countries will be able to communicate by radio to avoid tensions and confrontations at sea, reports Efe news.

A South Korean Navy vessel situated near Yeonpyeong island – which Pyongyang bombed in 2010 – on Sunday carried out the first test call, which was answered by a North Korean boat.

In May 2008, when inter-Korean relations had hit a low after conservatives came to power in South Korean elections, maritime communication between the two countries was cut off after North Korean vessels stopped responding to South Korean radio messages.

In June 2004, when the two Koreans maintained amicable relations, they agreed to use the same radio frequencies and visual signals for better communications in the waters around the Korean Peninsula.

Earlier this month, the first-ever communications at sea between South and North Korean patrol ships were carried out.