North Korean Staff Returns to Liaison Office After Friday Withdrawal

Officials say it's business as usual after brief closure

There are a lot of puzzling moves and backpedals related to North Korea diplomacy lately. On Monday, North Korea’s staff returned to the liaison office and announced business as usual, after having just withdrawn from the office on Friday.

The liaison office in Kaesong is a joint facility with South Korea used for inter-Korean relations. There was no word Friday as to why they withdrew in the first place, but there was some speculation that it was related to a sudden announcement of US sanctions on Thursday.

Yet the Thursday sanctions were reversed by President Trump on Friday, and now the liaison office withdrawal has similarly been reversed on the next business day. Effectively, a lot of highly publicized moves since Thursday have amounted to nothing at all.

Still, it’s allowed both sides to appear to be attacking tough, and then appear to be making some concessions in the name of diplomacy. Despite all of this, however, it’s not clear anyone is any closer to resuming diplomacy.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of