The special committee tasked with advising South Korea's unification ministry said Thursday that the closure of the inter-Korean Kaesong Industrial Complex was unilaterally decided by former President Park Geun-hye without any prior consultation with the relevant ministries or the South Korean firms operating there.
"The closure of the Kaesong Industrial Park was a decision that transcends law. Even a political decision amid a security crisis should be made within the boundary of law and should follow legal procedures."
The panel also said that concrete compensation plans were needed to provide extra support to the hundreds of South Korean companies who suffered losses from investments in inter-Korean projects.
It added that resuming the operation of the industrial park was necessary if certain conditions are met.
"While implementing U.N. Security Council resolutions on the North, we need to re-open the Kaesong complex and to actively prepare for it, if certain conditions are met due to changes in the global political landscape."
Seoul shut down the factory zone in February 2016 in response to Pyongyang's fourth nuclear test the month before and a long range missile test.
The panel also advised the government to separate humanitarian aid and economic cooperation from politics and military exercises.
All civilian exchanges have been banned due to series of incidents, including when a North Korean soldier killed a South Korean tourist at the Mount Kumgang resort in 2008, and the sinking of the South Korean warship Cheonan in 2010.
"The panel's review comes as the current Moon Jae-in administration is seeking to create North Korea policies that can survive through succeeding administrations regardless of their ideology.
Ji Myung-kil, Arirang News."