As used in this chapter – (1) the term “international terrorism” means activities that … (B) appear to be intended … (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; [or] (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion ….
If North Korea’s latest were less laughable than a “threat” to cut off what must amount to billions in free money from South Korea, it might serve as one more impediment to one of its key demands — removal from the list of state sponsors of terrorism.
Ahn Kyung-ho, director of the Secretariat at the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland (CPRF), claimed that if the Grand National Party (GNP) takes power in South Korea, inter-Korean exchange and cooperation will come to a rupture and the whole nation will go down in flames of war.
Director Ahn said, “If the GNP comes to power, the June 15 Joint Statement will be reduced to nothing, with the roads between Pyongyang and Seoul and the path to Mt. Geumgang being blocked; the construction of the Gaesong Industrial Complex will be completely suspended, and the whole nation will go down in flames of war ignited by the United States.
I believe the last four words there are probably sufficient to obscure whether this is actually a threat, versus the sort of bombastic language for which the North has made itself infamous. Still, Ahn is leading a North Korean delegation to Kwangju (in the South) soon, and in more normal times, his plane would be kept in a holding pattern at 20,000 feet until he clarifies or retracts a statement that links the choice of South Korean voters to hostilities.