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Convicted spy appeals for `fatherland`s` support

Posted March. 05, 2001 11:11,   


``It would be a great help to me if President Kim Dae-Jung, in the capacity of Nobel Prize laureate, if not Korean president, would enquire after my safety through the U.S. government,`` Robert Kim, a Korean-American who was jailed on spy charges in the United States, told the Dong-a Ilbo in a recent interview.

Kim, alias Kim Chae-Kwon, has served four years of a nine-year sentence for delivering classified U.S. government information to Korean authorities. Kim appealed for his ``fatherland`` to come forward and ``rescue`` him.

In a telephone interview from a federal prison in Pennsylvania last month, Kim noted that although he became an American citizen, he still considers Korea his home. The 61-year-old former intelligence agent called for the Korean government to assist him in his plight.

While working as a computer information analyst in the U.S. Navy intelligence bureau in 1996, Kim was arrested on charges of handing over 39 top secret documents to the military attache at the Korean Embassy in Washington. The interview with the Dong-a Ilbo was his first with a Korean newspaper since being put behind bars nearly five years ago.

Lee Jong-Hoon eligius@donga.com