North Korean state media have turned their wrath on South Korean presidential hopeful Chung Mong-joon, a former chairman of the ruling Saenuri Party who recently declared his bid. In a commentary on Thursday, the propaganda website Uriminzokkiri said, "During a so-called press conference on Sunday, Chung Mong-joon made absurd remarks viciously slandering our dignity and system."
Chung, a scion of the Hyundai family, had warned of a fresh armed provocation from the North. "The regime is highly likely to conduct a third nuclear test soon," he said. He also described the hereditary succession in the North as "anachronistic."
The website said, "This man has played a leading role in a heinous campaign against [the North] launched by outside forces and the conservative South Korean clique, while throwing a monkey wrench into inter-Korean economic cooperation efforts once led by his father," the late Hyundai Group chairman Chung Ju-yung.
They said Chung "is running amok to grab power, turning his coat without scruple and stabbing others in the back."
The Hyundai Group played a leading role in cross-border business and ran package tours to Mt. Kumgang.
The North regime has tended to treat the Hyundai family with some reverence due to their relationship with former North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, but now the gloves are apparently off.