Posted June. 17, 2005 03:25,
Attending the Unification Festival commemorating the fifth anniversary of the June 15 Joint Declaration, Unification Minister Chung Dong-young met Kim Yong Nam, the President of the Presidium of the Supreme People`s Assembly exclusively and exchanged opinions on the North Korean nuclear issue and ways to normalize the inter-Korea relationship yesterday.
After the general meeting between the South Korean representatives and President Kim Yong Nam, held at the Mokran House in Pyongyang from 7:20 p.m. yesterday, Minister Chung met President Kim separately for about 20 minutes.
At the unofficial meeting, Minister Chung conveyed the message of the recent Korea-U.S. summit that the U.S. will guarantee the North`s regime and pursue "more normal relations" with it if Pyongyang renounces its nuclear programs.
It was reported that Minister Chung also conveyed President Roh Moo-hyuns verbal message urging North Korea to observe the 1991 Declaration of the Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and return to the six-party talks. It also said that if the North Korean nuclear crisis enters a phase of resolution, South Korea will embark on a comprehensive and specific program of assistance in earnest.
The meeting between Minister Chung and North Korea`s National Defense Committee Chairman Kim Jong Il, however, did not take place until 6:00 p.m. yesterday.
Before the event, South Korean representatives met with President Kim Yong Nam at the Manson Assembly Hall in Pyongyang at 9:00 a.m. yesterday.
On the occasion, President Kim argued, "The U.S. hostile policy toward North Korea has not changed at all. It is pressuring us in various areas like slandering that we are the den of tyranny, but we are not at all shaken and are building up our economy."
The Unification Festival ended at the Ryukyong Chung Ju-yung Gymnasium yesterday afternoon. The South Korean government and civil representatives will leave the Sunan Airport in Pyongyang at 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. today, respectively, on chartered planes and return via Incheon Airport.