By Melissa Zhu
(BBC) – Kim Yo-jong, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s powerful sister, has slammed Seoul’s offer of economic aid in return for denuclearisation steps, calling it the “height of absurdity”.
“No-one barters their destiny for corn cake,” she said in a statement.
South Korea’s president Yoon Suk-yeol had Wednesday reiterated the plan, which he first mentioned in May.
But Ms Kim said on Friday that Mr Yoon should “shut his mouth” and called him “simple and still childish”.
South Korea’s presidential office said it regretted her “rude” remarks, but that the offer still stands – the office was responding to Ms Kim’s statement, released by state news agency KCNA on Friday.
“North Korea’s attitude is in no way helpful to the peace and prosperity of the Korean peninsula, as well as its own future,” it said.
In May, Mr Yoon said South Korea was prepared to present what he called an “audacious plan” that would strengthen North Korea’s economy and improve its people’s quality of life.
Speaking at a news conference marking his first 100 days in office on Wednesday, the South Korean president reiterated that he was willing to provide phased economic aid to the North if it stopped developing nuclear weapons and took steps towards denuclearisation.
Ms Kim’s remarks on Friday were the first time a senior official from the North directly commented on Mr Yoon’s plan.