Daily Intelligence Alerts

February 23, 2018

South Korea (Security Rating 2)

Security
Further protests possible in South Korea against planned visit by a sanctioned North Korean official Feb. 25-27. Expect minor disruptions.

This alert began 23 Feb 2018 07:46 GMT and is scheduled to expire 27 Feb 2018 23:59 GMT.

  • Event: Possible protests
  • Location: Nationwide, especially Seoul (map)
  • Time Frame: Through Feb. 27
  • Impact: Possible increased security; localized traffic disruptions

Summary
Conservative political parties and activists in South Korea could stage additional protests over a planned visit by a top North Korean official blamed for the deadly 2010 sinking of a South Korean navy ship that killed 46 people. Kim Yong-chol - a senior leader of the North's ruling Workers' Party - will lead a high-level delegation at the closing ceremony of the XXIII Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang on Feb. 25. The delegation will also meet South Korean President Moon Jae-in during their three-day visit to the country lasting until Feb. 27. Dozens of members from the main opposition Liberty Korea Party staged a protest outside the presidential Blue House Feb. 23, demanding the government not allow Kim - currently sanctioned by the United States and South Korea - to enter the country.

Further protests are possible near sites on the North Korean delegation's itinerary, including the Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium in PyeongChang County, where the Games' closing ceremony will take place, and Blue House in Seoul. Demonstrations are also possible near popular public squares and parks in several cities nationwide. Most gatherings will likely remain small, attracting several dozens to a few hundred people, though sizable rallies are also possible. Police will probably increase security near likely demonstration sites; minor skirmishes cannot be entirely ruled out. Localized traffic disruptions are possible if large rallies occur.

Advice
Avoid all protests as a precaution; immediately leave the area if large protests begin to form, due to the increased potential for clashes. Plan for increased security and localized traffic disruptions near likely rally sites.

 

February 9, 2018

South Korea (Security Rating 2)

Transportation
North Korean delegation to arrive at Incheon Airport, Seoul, South Korea, 1330 Feb. 9. Expect increased security, possible protests.
The locations affected by this alert are:

  • Seoul
  • Incheon

This alert began 08 Feb 2018 16:58 GMT and is scheduled to expire 09 Feb 2018 23:59 GMT.

  • Incident: Official visit of North Korean delegation
  • Location: Incheon Airport, Seoul
  • Time/Date: 1330 Feb. 9
  • Impact: Heightened security; transport delays; possible protests

Summary
A North Korean delegation is due to arrive at Seoul's Incheon Airport (ICN) at 1330 Feb. 9, likely leading to localized disruptions and delays. The delegation of 23 high-level North Korean representatives to the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics will include Kim Yo-jong, the sister of North Korea's paramount leader, Kim Jong-un.

Expect increased security in and around Incheon Airport as the delegation arrives at and departs the facility. Travelers could experience lengthy queues clearing security and customs at Incheon, Feb. 9. Traffic may be blocked or rerouted near the airport to ensure the security of the North Korean representatives.

South Korean groups opposed to cooperation with Pyongyang will likely attempt to stage protests in conjunction with the arrival of the North Korean delegation. While major incidents of violence are unlikely, clashes cannot be ruled out during any protests. Authorities will undoubtedly boost security as a precaution.

Advice
Prepare for extremely tight security at Incheon Airport Feb. 9. Avoid any protests due to the possibility of clashes. Plan accordingly for temporary street closures and related traffic disruptions. Allow extra time to get to the airport and pass through security checks. Heed the instructions of security personnel, and remain nonconfrontational if questioned. Carry proper identification at all times.

 

February 7, 2018

South Korea (Security Rating 2)

Security
Activists could stage further protests in South Korea for and against North Korea's participation in the Olympic Games set to begin Feb. 9.

This alert affects South Korea

This alert began 07 Feb 2018 07:25 GMT and is scheduled to expire 10 Feb 2018 23:59 GMT.

  • Event: Possible protests
  • Location: Nationwide, especially Seoul (map)
  • Time Frame: Indefinite
  • Impact: Possible increased security; localized traffic disruptions

Summary
Activists against and supporters of North Korea's involvement in the XXIII Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang may stage further demonstrations in the lead-up to the sporting event, which begins Feb. 9. Conservative groups rallied at the Mukho Port during the arrival of a North Korean orchestra Feb. 6. Anti-North Korea activists also rallied outside a women's ice hockey practice match in Incheon Feb. 4. Demonstrations in support of North Korea's participation in the Olympic Games have also occurred. Supporters held a counterdemonstration outside the ice hockey match in Incheon Feb. 4, and smaller gatherings have taken place in several cities across the country. Large-scale demonstrations or rallies near Olympic venues appear unlikely, though some protests may occur in PyeongChang County and Gangneung.

Future protests could target the arrival of North Korean athletes, performers, and officials attending the Games, as well as events featuring North Korean performers. Rallies in support of North Korea's participation are possible and could occur near anti-North Korea events. Police will probably increase security near likely demonstration sites. While security personnel will attempt to keep rival protest groups apart, minor skirmishes cannot be entirely ruled out. Localized traffic disruptions are possible if sizable rallies occur.

Advice
Avoid all protests as a precaution; immediately leave the area if large protests begin to form, due to the increased potential for clashes. Plan for increased security and localized traffic disruptions near likely rally sites.

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