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Seoul to relay U.S. concerns to NK: Kim

Posted March. 12, 2001 14:34,   


President Kim Dae-Jung said Sunday that the government would soon relay U.S. President George W. Bush`s concerns over North Korea`s missile development program to Pyongyang authorities. Kim made the remarks in a speech at Seoul Airport in Songnam City upon his arrival home from a six-day U.S. visit, during which he held his first summit with President Bush and met other political and economic leaders.

``I was able to exchange views with the new U.S. administration through this visit and gained confidence that we will be able to maintain close cooperation,`` he said. The government will soon begin coordinating policy positions with the Bush administration on relations with North Korea, the president added. ``It is true that President Bush expressed some skepticism about North Korea,`` he said. ``I came to a better understanding of President Bush`s doubts about North Korea through my talks with him and will reflect his concerns in the course of further developing the government`s North Korea policy.`` ``I will deliver Bush`s views to North Korea and, if necessary, our advice, too,`` Kim said.

The president cited as the major outcome of his first summit with Bush that he had affirmed the strength of Korea-U.S. relations, obtained U.S. recognition of the fruits of his ``Sunshine Policy`` of engagement with North Korea, recognition of South Korea`s initiatives in inter-Korean relations, U.S. support for the second inter-Korean summit and its commitment to abide by the 1994 Agreed Framework. ``I am satisfied with the outcome of my U.S. visit, having achieved the goals I set out to reach,`` he said. ``Bush told me that North Korea needs not have any fear of South Korea and the U.S. and that it should have the firm belief that South Korea and the U.S. want peace.``

Kim also quoted Bush as expressing ``his belief in me, saying that I am working for peace and implementing policies for peace that will help attain the result everybody wants.``

Yun Seung-Mo ysmo@donga.com