] The decision to close an inter-Korean industrial complex was made out of security concerns in response to North Korea’s nuclear and missile tests early this year, the Unification Ministry said on Oct. 26.
The reaction by the ministry came as a local report claimed Choi Soon-sil, a close confidant to President Park Geun-hye, was involved in state affairs, including the government’s February decision to shut down the Kaesong Industrial Complex. She does not hold a government post.
On Feb. 10, Seoul shut down the factory park in response to Pyongyang’s fourth nuclear test in January and long-range rocket launch in the following month.
The ministry said that the decision was made out of security concerns, effectively dismissing the report.
“The government decided to close the complex as it judged that North Korea’s nuclear and missile provocations pose a grave threat to national security and consensus was built over the shutdown,”
Jeong Joon-hee, a ministry spokesman, told a regular press briefing. “It was no more or no less than that.”
Choi is at the center of a corruption scandal in which she allegedly pushed conglomerates into making donations to two nonprofit foundations by using her ties to Park.