More S.Koreans Than Ever Support Reunification

A government campaign to promote support for Korean reunification appears to be biting, with more South Koreans now in favor than ever before, according to a poll.

In the survey of 1,200 people by Seoul National University's Institute for Peace and Unification Studies, some 55.9 percent said reunification is in South Korea's interest, the most since the poll started in 2007.

Support for reunification dwindled from 55.8 percent in 2007 to 48.6 percent in 2013 but after heavy campaigning by the government and conservative media now appears on the upswing.

Some 29.8 percent said reunification will solve the unemployment problem, up 7.5 percentage points from last year.

Views of North Korea are also more positive, with 45.3 percent said that North Korea is a "partner," up 4.9 percentage points. Only 13.9 percent believe the North is an enemy, down from 16.4 percent.

But some 89.3 percent feel threatened by North Korea's nuclear weapons, up from 78.4 percent in 2013, when the North conducted its third nuclear test.

Some 88 percent believe the North will not abandon nuclear weapons, up 3.4 percentage points, while 74.9 percent said the North could launch an armed provocation compared to 66 percent in the previous year.

englishnews@chosun.com / Oct. 02, 2014 09:46 KST