Time Running Out for Families Separated by Korean War

A study shows that around a dozen members of families separated by the Korean War on either side of the border die every day without seeing their loved ones again.

Some 44,444 out of 128,129 people who applied for cross-border reunions so far have died, according to the study by South Korea's Red Cross obtained Sunday by Grand National Party lawmaker Yoo Jae-joong of the National Assembly Budget Settlement Committee. As the figures were compiled since 1999, they translate into around 10 deaths a day.

The survivors are aging. Some 4,666 people who applied for reunions are 90 or older, accounting for 5.6 percent of the total number. Those in their 80s make up 35 percent, numbering 29,323, while those in their 70s account for 36.6 percent and number 30,613.

Some committed suicide as chances grew slimmer of meeting their loved ones again.

englishnews@chosun.com / Sep. 13, 2010 10:46 KST