N. Korea gov't took 70 pct of money paid for Kaesong workers

February 14, 2016 04:00

South Korea said on Sunday 70 percent of the US dollars paid as wages and other fees for the now-suspended Kaesong industrial project run jointly with the North had been diverted for use in Pyongyang's weapons programme and luxury goods for its leader.

It is the first formal acknowledgement by the South that the 55,000 North Korean workers at the Kaesong complex saw little of the USD 160 they were paid on average a month.

South Korea on Wednesday suspended the project as punishment for the North's long-range rocket launch on Feb. 7 saying it would no longer allow the funds paid to Kaesong to be used in the North's missile and nuclear programmes.

The North conducted its fourth nuclear test last month.

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