Waiting North Korean visitors are visible atop the building at upper left as South Korean guards take positions during a Joint Security Area tour on Wednesday, May 29, 2019. (JOSEPH DITZLER/STARS AND STRIPES)
Waiting North Korean visitors are visible atop the building at upper left as South Korean guards take positions during a Joint Security Area tour on Wednesday, May 29, 2019. (JOSEPH DITZLER/STARS AND STRIPES)

South Korea reopens DMZ/JSA tours, allowing visitors to see much more than before

by Joseph Ditzler
Stars and Stripes

You don’t have to be leader of the free world to visit Panmunjom — the truce village in the Demilitarized Zone where President Donald Trump shook hands June 30 with Kim Jong Un of North Korea.

Numerous tour groups provide opportunities to see the spot where the three-year Korean War ended with an armistice in 1953. Tour companies in the private sector abound, along with military operations like the Force Support Squadron at Osan Air Base and Discover Seoul, a contract tour operator at Dragon Hill Lodge at Yongsan Garrison.

A trip to Panmunjom — the area around the historic U.N.-blue buildings is officially known as the Joint Security Area — is a bit different than it was just a year ago. That’s because South Korean authorities lessened the tight choreography around personal visits as part of their bid to reach some form of normal relations with their northern neighbors.

Read more at: https://www.stripes.com/1.588889

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