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NK, Removal of Monitoring Cameras

Posted December. 15, 2002 22:40,   


The North Korean official central news agency reported Dec. 12 that Pyongyang conveyed its position to take action if seals and monitoring cameras were not removed to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

According to the state-run news agency, in a letter to Mohamed Elbaradei, director general of the atomic agency, Ri Je-son, director general of North Korea’s Department of Atomic Energy, said, "If the IAEA does not take measures for removal of seals and monitoring cameras, we will unilaterally take action which is needed. The issue of lifting nuclear freeze is beyond its scope of activity and it is our special move to protect our self-reliance and right to live from the US."

Meanwhile, the South Korean government is reported to have decided to induce change in North Korea’s attitudes through aggressive inter-Korean contacts in its judgment that inter-Korean channels will be effective in order to settle the nuclear crisis on the Korean Peninsula.

The government is said to consider conveying the message that the US has no intention of invading the North through various inter-Korean channels including dispatch of a special envoy, and urging the North to cooperate in solving the current crisis.

A government official on Dec. 15 said, "The government is reviewing the way in which it conveys the US’s intention of not invading the North, US President George W. Bush expressed during his phone call to South Korean President Kim Dae-jung."

Earlier on Dec 14. President Kim had a call with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and they agreed that it is important to persuade the North to abandon its uranium enriching program to develop nuclear bombs in a tangible manner and not to reactivate a nuclear reactor, according to Im Seong-jun, senior presidential secretary for foreign and security affairs.

ysmo@donga.com esprit@donga.com