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South Korea's front-line guard post on inter-Korean border to become national cultural asset

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남북합의서에 따라 철거대상 11개 GP중 보존된 강원도 고성 GP의 현재 모습

As a step towards building trust and establishing peace around the inter-Korean border area,... the two Koreas completed demolishing ten front-line guard posts each in the DMZ last December.
They each decided to preserve one of those guard posts... and our defense ministry correspondent Park Ji-won tells us more about the one preserved South Korean guard post.
This place is only about three hundred meters away from the Military Demarcation Line,... the border dividing South and North Korea.
And this now-defunct facility used to be one of many front-line guard posts,... set up along the border.
This guard post, located in Goseong, Gangwon-do Province at the northeast of the Demilitarized Zone, started operations back in July 1953,... right after the armistice agreement between the two Koreas came into effect.
And until only last October,... dozens of South Korean soldiers were stationed here.
But as this was designated as one of the eleven guard posts that South and North Korea had each decided to remove,... as part of implementing last September's comprehensive inter-Korean military agreement,... it is now all empty,... devoid of firearms and troops, and with other facilities like electricity and water supplies also removed.
The South Korean national flag and UN Command flag that used to hang here are also gone.
However,... as the two Koreas decided to preserve one of the eleven guard posts each... for historical reasons,... this place has been preserved.
North Korea has decided to preserve a guard post farther west,... but the North Korean guard post that was located less than six hundred meters away from here,... was demolished last fall.
According to military sources,... North Korean soldiers can sometimes be seen patrolling in the area.
South Korean troops stationing at nearby posts say,... despite reduced inter-Korean tensions at the border,.. they stay vigilant.
"All our troops conduct operations with firm and full defensive readiness, in order not to create any vacuum in our military defense posture." 
It is believed that the South has about sixty and the North about a hundred and sixty guard posts inside the Demilitarized Zone.
Seoul's defense ministry officials say the ultimate goal of both Koreas is to remove all of them in the near future.
The Cultural Heritage Administration also announced Thursday,... that this guard post will be designated as a national cultural asset,... to show its symbolic meaning.
Park Ji-won, Arirang News.

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