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North Korea To Set Clocks Back 30 Minutes To Create Its Own Time Zone

On August 15, all the clocks in North Korea will be turned back 30 minutes, signaling the creation of “Pyongyang Time.”

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The new time zone appears to be a shot at Japan as its launch will coincide with 70th anniversary of Korea's liberation from Japanese occupation, reports The Guardian.

"The wicked Japanese imperialists committed such unpardonable crimes as depriving Korea of even its standard time while mercilessly trampling down its land," according to the country’s official news agency.

Both North and South Korea’s time zones have been in line with Japan's since the country occupied the peninsula from 1910 - 1945. With the change, North Korea will now be GMT +8.30, rather than GMT +9.

 Source: The Washington Post.

Japanese occupation remains a sore spot for many in both Koreas.

“Hundreds of thousands of Koreans were forced to fight as frontline soldiers, work in slave-labour conditions or serve as prostitutes in brothels operated by the Japanese military during the war,” wrote The Guardian.

While a 30-minute change sounds innocuous, it may affect South Korea’s economic and diplomatic relationships with its estranged brother.

“In the longer term, there may be some fallout for efforts to unify standards and reduce differences between the two sides," said South Korean Unification Ministry official Jeong Joon-Hee last Friday.

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