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Photo, Supernote Support Forgery Claim

Posted February. 24, 2006 03:06,   


Grand National Party (GNP) lawmakers showed a North Korean-made “supernote” and a satellite photo of facilities in North Korea where it believes counterfeiting activities are taking place at a National Assembly questioning session on unification, foreign affairs, and national security yesterday.

“As it is clear that North Korea is committing illegal acts, the government should stop siding with North Korea,” a GNP lawmaker said.

Rep. Kim Jae-won of the GNP showed a satellite photo and said, “North Korea is producing counterfeit currency at the Workers’ Party Central Committee Civilian Provision Office in Jung-gu, Pyongyang.”

According to Kim, false currency is being distributed through the Gwangmyongsong Trading Company, a company that manages Kim Jong Il’s private funds.

Kim also said, “A Swiss-made Intaglio Color Eight printer that can make very detailed supernotes costs around 15 billion won, and is only sold to government organizations. In consideration of these facts, it is clear that the Kim Jong Il regime is behind the counterfeiting acts. The government should have the 1,369 counterfeit bills held in storage at the Seoul District Prosecutors’ Office examined by experts and announce the results to the nation.”

Rep. Kim Moon-su of the GNP also showed a North Korean-made supernote, which he bought for $70 dollars from an employee of North Korea’s Department of National Security earlier this year. The employee is working as a North Korean trader for the Shinheung Trading Company in Dandong, China.

The South Korean government did not comment on the GNP’s allegations beyond a statement from Prime Minister Lee Hae-chan, saying, “We have conveyed our concerns to North Korea on the counterfeiting matter.”

Ban Ki-moon, South Korea’s minister of foreign affairs and trade, gave an ambiguous comment on the matter, saying, “It is true that we are sharing information with the United States, but it is not appropriate at this moment to reveal whether the U.S. has presented clear evidence.”

Ruling party members say that American intelligence on North Korean counterfeiting activities may be in error. “The evidence is still insufficient. We need clear evidence such as a picture from the production facility,” said ruling Uri Party lawmaker Ahn Yeong-geun. Another Uri Party lawmaker, Seon Byeong-ryul, said, “The United States is only presenting circumstantial evidence. By telling the media America’s unilateral position, U.S. Ambassador Alexander Vershbow is undermining the efforts of the countries working to resolve the matter.”