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Korea: Guided tour of "the most dangerous place in the world"

The North Korean official is listening and laughing. "They are ours," he said, pointing out of the speakers who played a patriotic song. Around, tourists already crush their cameras. After three hours by bus from the capital Pyongyang, they have just entered the demilitarized zone (DMZ) established at the end of the Korean War (1950-1953). A band that is 250 kilometers long and 4 kilometers wide, may visit a lot of framed. It is here in Panmunjom, "village truce", that the meeting between dictator Kim Jong-un and the South Korean president, Moon Jae-in, will take place on April 27th. And probably the historical interview between Donald Trump and the North Korean leader in early June, with halving the peninsula at stake. "We are at the most dangerous place in the world," warns North Korea's officer.

Not easy at first glance. Just a hundred yards away, his men stand in front of three blue barracks. Two of them even took a few steps from the cement strip as the demarcated border. But on the other side, no visible army. Only four South Korean soldiers flow nonchalantly, rifle to shoulder, protected by a parapet halfway up a gray building with a curved ceiling. However, the two countries only signed a violent aid in July 1

953 and remained "technically" in a state of war.

At the second inter-Korean summit, the third since the end of the conflict, leader Kim Jong-un will cross the limit to find his counterpart. They will discuss the fate of North Korea's nuclear arena and the prospect of a peace treaty.

Two American soldiers were killed by the ax

The group of tourists was led in a room of "Peace Museum", Lined with pictures of Kim Jong-un in the middle of his troops and rockets at their shooting point. "The Americans broke in the handover," says a plaque. "They have broken the 80,000 violence force," said the officer, assured of his statistics. How? "By sending spies and approaching heavy weapons on the other side, but if they attack us again, we will defeat them.

When the guides invite you to discover an object placed under glass: the shaft was used to kill two American soldiers 18th of August 1976. An incident occurred during the pruning of a tree. On that day, a GI patrol worked to cut a poppy leaf that hid the field of view of a UN observer post, when a group of thirty-five North Korean soldiers slaughtered two of her limbs with one ax. Cause The tree was planted by leader Kim Il-sang himself and was retained by him. A little revisited story on the north korean side. "Three of our people saw eighteen Americans, one of whom threw an ax in their direction," says a guide. They restored it and killed an American.

It does not prevent. At that time, the conflict threatens to trigger a new war. Three days later, Washington Operation begins "Paul Bun yan. "Eight hundred thirteen soldiers, 27 helicopters and B-52 bombers are mobilized to monitor the destruction of the tree. The North Koreans twist their machine weapons and stop giving up shooting. Only the poplar stub will remain in place.


One of the North Korean escorts returns to the museum terrace and looks around. "There are mines, but also many wildlife," he says. Not wrong. Along the 38th parallel, DMZ is a lush space filled with rivers and populated by gorales, lynx, black bears.

It is also here among the prairie that the North Korean deserts try to succeed. As in November, when a soldier crossed the border on foot under his countrymen's bullets. Seriously hurt, the man survived and stunned the South Korean doctors, who were 27 cm long in their intestinal parasites because of malnutrition.

Until recently, the speakers in Seoul on the border intended to tame the enemy were giving news about the desert's health. A war of the decibels was interrupted. Earlier this week, South Korea completed its audio messages.

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