Opinion / Opinion Line

New time zone for DPRK sparks debate

(China Daily) Updated: 2015-08-10 08:05
The Democratic People's Republic of Korea will reportedly set its clocks back by 30 minutes on Aug 15 to create a new "Pyongyang time", according to the country's state news agency Korea Central News Agency on Friday. The establishment of "Pyongyang time" is aimed at ending the DPRK's connections with Japanese colonial rule before and during World War II, when the whole of the Korean Peninsula was forced to follow Japan's time zone. Comments:

It was on August 15 when President Kim Il-Sung, benefactor of national resurrection and peerless patriot, crushed the brigandish Japanese imperialists by wining a long bloody battle against them and liberating the land.

It was a day of historical significance as it put an end to the history of national sufferings and brought about a radical turn in carving out the destiny of the country and its people.

The Japanese imperialists committed such unpardonable crimes as depriving Korea of even its standard time while mercilessly trampling upon its land and its 5,000-years history and culture and pursuing the unheard-of policy of obliterating the Korean nation.

Korea Central News Agency, Aug 7

With the new time zone, the DPRK leader Kim Jong-un is reasserting the country's self-reliance and national dignity to his people. However, the new time zone change will bring difficulties and inconveniences to the DPRK as well.

Chang Young-seok, an expert on DPRK studies, Aug 7

This (DPRK's new time zone) will cause difficulty in restoring the homogeneity of the north and the south in the long term. In the short term, there might be some inconvenience in entering and leaving the DPRK's border city of Kaesong.

And in the longer term, there may be some fallout for efforts to unify standards and reduce the differences between the two sides.

Jeong Joon Hee, Unification Ministry spokesman of the Republic of Korea, Aug 7

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