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North Korea: North-South Dialogue Will Resume Only After Repeal of NSL

North Korea: North-South Dialogue Will Resume Only After Repeal of NSL

Posted September. 05, 2004 21:45,   


“They should make a courageous decision to repeal the National Security Law, which inhibits national reconciliation and unity, if South Korean authorities genuinely want to resume the North-South dialogue and are interested in national reunification,” quoted North Korea’s state-owned Korea Central News Agency on the Committee for National Reconciliation, a North Korean front for non-governmental, civilian exchanges with the South, in a statement on September 4.

The statement is important because it hinted that the North will link the repeal of the NSL with its resumption of inter-government talks which the North suspended following the South’s ban on its people from attending a memorial ceremony for the late North Korean leader Kim Il-sung in the North and the entry of 468 North Korean defectors to the South

“What has dimmed North-South relations recently is the existence of the NSL, which does not recognize North Korea and regards the brethren of the same blood as an enemy,” said the committee in the statement. “Whether to repeal the NSL or not is not a domestic legal issue of the South. It is the crucial issue that will determine North-South relations.’

“Any opponent of the repeal of the NSL cannot set foot in the republic. He or she has no respect or business meeting us,” said the committee. “The NSL, the historical relic which has run its course, should be repealed completely, not revised.”

Hyong-gwon Pu bookum90@donga.com