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President stresses national security

Posted October. 02, 2000 11:53,   


President Kim Dae-Jung said Sunday that to realize a viable peace, the nation must be prepared for war and that war must be prevented through establishing a tight security posture and improving of South-North Korean relations.

"We must continuously maintain a firm security posture until peace mechanism is solidly established between the two Koreas,¡± the president said in a speech while attending the 52nd Armed Forces Day ceremony held at Gyeryongdae in South Chungcheong Province.

Kim disclosed a plan to promote a four-party peace talks involving the two Koreas, the United States and China, in order to put an end to the anachronistic Cold War on the Korean peninsula and realize viable peace.

Referring to the next inter-Korean defense ministers' meeting, the president expressed hope that the talks would make remarkable progress in tension reduction by reaching agreements on the installation of a military hotline, mutual inspection of military exercises, prior notification of troop movements, and so on.

Noting that he desires to see North Korea improve relations with the United States and Japan, he sincerely hoped that Washington and Pyongyang will achieve a landmark result in the scheduled high-level talks between their two governments.

Meanwhile, saying that now a large-scale personnel reshuffle in the military is under way, Kim stressed that the reorganization must be conducted in a fair and just manner, casting off unsavory appointments based on such factors as regional and school ties.

Choi Young-Mook ymook@donga.com