It is the latest in an escalating standoff over North Korea's recent rocket launch that Seoul, Washington and their allies view as a banned test of missile technology. The North says its actions on the Kaesong complex were a response to Seoul's earlier decision to suspend operations as punishment for the launch.
On Thursday, the 280 South Korean workers who had been at the park crossed the border into South Korea, several hours after a deadline set by the North passed. Their departure quashed concerns that some might be held hostage, and lowered the chances that the standoff might lead to violence or miscalculations. But they weren't allowed to bring back any finished products and equipment at their factories because the North said it would freeze all South Korean assets there.
The North also said it was closing an inter-Korean highway link to Kaesong and shutting down two cross-border communication hotlines.
Unification Minister Hong Yong Pyo said the North Korean action was "very regrettable" and warned the North not to damage South Korean assets in Kaesong.
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