S. Koreans visiting N. Korea total more than 2,800 in July

SEOUL, Sept. 21 (Yonhap) -- The number of South Koreans making cross-border trips to North Korea reached more than 2,800 in July from zero a month earlier as Pyongyang allowed businessmen to travel to a jointly-run industrial complex, government data showed Saturday.

A total of 2,814 South Koreans visited the North in July, according to data from the unification ministry. All of them traveled to the industrial complex in the North's border city of Kaesong, the data showed.

Those visits were made possible as Pyongyang allowed South Korean businessmen to visit their factories in the Kaesong complex while the two Koreas negotiated on how to reopen the suspended complex. The North unilaterally shut down the zone in early April in anger over U.S.-involved military drills in the South.

The zone went into normal operations earlier this month.

The July figure shows a stark increase from the June figure when no South Korean entered the communist country.

The number of North Koreans making visits to the South, in turn, amounted to 36 in July as Pyongyang sent its women's national football squad to a regional competition in the South. It marked the first time in two years for North Koreans to visit the South.

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