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Kim meets press as 3rd ASEM chair

Posted October. 17, 2000 10:05,   


President Kim Dae-Jung said Tuesday that South and North Korea will be able to put an end to the Cold War on the Korean Peninsula, if there is a progress in easing tension between the two sides, with the two taking initiative to agree on a peace system in the framework of the four-party talks and the United States and China supporting and guaranteeing it.

In an interview with the Yonhap News Agency, selected as the main news agency of Asia-Europe Meeting to open Friday, President Kim, who is chairman of the Third ASEM summit, said that North Korea and the U.S. named the four-way talks as one of channels to build a peace system

The President evaluated that there has been positive progress in inter-Korean relations, including talks in the security sector, since the South and North Korean summit in June in Pyongyang.

As for the possibility of North Korea¡¯s entry into ASEM, President Kim said that ASEM is basically an open and progress process and the government¡¯s stance is that it should consider positively the entry of any country wishing to join it.

If North Korea formally applies for a membership, the government will discuss the issue with other member countries according to the guideline for the entry of new member countries to be adopted during the Seoul summit.

He also said that the government would advise the European Union to make more positive efforts to better its relations with North Korea.

The President further said the adoption of the ¡°Seoul Declaration on Peace on the Korean Peninsula¡± in the Seoul ASEM summit will declare to the entire world the ASEM¡¯s support of ¡°our policy of reconciliation and cooperation toward North Korea and the peace on the Korean Peninsula.¡± ¡°The declaration will be really meaningful and precious,¡± the President stressed.

Choi Young-Mook ymook@donga.com