NEW DELHI: In the early hours of Tuesday, North Korea and South Korea announced that they have reached a deal that will steer tensions away from the threat of military confrontation, with Pyongyang expressing regret over serious injuries suffered by two South Korean soldiers and Seoul agreeing to… switch off loudspeakers.

These loudspeakers along the Demilitarized Zone have been a major source of tension between the two countries. In addition to anti North Korean propaganda, the speakers were blaring weather reports and K-Pop, subjecting the North Korean’s to more than tolerable doses of Gangnam Style!

Here is one of the K-Pop songs that was reportedly being blasted along the DMZ, causing Kim Jong-un sleepless nights.

Last week on Thursday, the confrontation got so heated that Seoul fired dozens of artillery rounds across the border in response to what it said was North Korean artillery strikes aimed at attacking the loudspeakers.

Kim Jong-un had demanded that the speakers come down by 0900BST on Saturday -- a deadline that passed without result, but talks had already begun by then. As the deal was announced, the world breathed a sigh of relief as it diffused the risk of confrontation where North Korea had doubled its artillery forces on the front lines and ordered most of its submarines out from their bases.

North Korea also restarted its own loudspeakers, but reports suggest that quality was so bad that the messages were inaudible.

The contentious speakers were restarted after an 11 year hiatus, as in 2004 the two countries reached a deal to dismantle all propaganda loudspeakers along the border.

Last week, South Korea began blaring messages as a response to Pyongyang planting landmines along the DMZ that injured two South Korean soldiers. North Korea denied planting the mines, and it was the country’s eventual willingness to express “regret” over the incident that made a deal possible.

For now, there is peace along the DMZ, not to forget silence as the speakers have been removed. North Korea takes the loudspeaker broadcasts seriously as it does not want its soldiers exposed to propaganda highlighting North Korean rights abuses and economic mismanagement, news from the outside world, and claims that defectors will be welcomed in South Korea.

As part of the deal, the two countries -- technically at war since the 1950s -- have also agreed to work towards a resumption of reunions for families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War, a major point of contention. Reports further indicate that North Korea and South Korea have agreed to initiate follow up talks to discuss a range of issues to improve ties.