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"If the South Gives to the North, it is Good for Both of Us”

"If the South Gives to the North, it is Good for Both of Us”

Posted February. 17, 2007 07:26,   


In spite of the February 13 Beijing Accord at the six-nation talks, the nuclear crisis in North Korea has not yet been clearly resolved. At this point, President Roh’s remark regarding massive aid toward North Korea has sparked a lot of controversy.

His remark, which shows his intention to support the Pyongyang regime, drew criticism because his reaction appears to be overly hasty as plans of a clear disposal of North Korea’s previous nuclear weapons and nuclear materials have not appeared on the table at the six-party talks.

President Roh, who is currently visiting in Italy, said on February 15, “If necessary, South Korea must yield to North Korea in order to address the nuclear issues, and it is good for both nations.”

President Roh said at a meeting with Koreans living in Rome, “The result of the talks was far more successful than I expected because I was thinking that we would be lucky if the talks just continued without a breakdown.”

“The nuclear issues will be resolved even if it would be a considerable burden to the South Koreans, and it is meaningless to figure out whose fault it is between the two homogeneous nations,” he said.

He added, “Some people criticize that the government has given too much to the North, but they should focus on the fact that after World War II, because of the Marshall Plan that offered American financial aid for a program of European economic recovery, the U.S. had become a nation that had much to gain from the plan.”

Judging from his remarks such as “I received a report that both the U.S. and North Korea have a will to solve the problem” and “I am also really looking forward to seeing the talks go well,” some people point out that his working group might report on the North issue overly positively.

Regarding the Beijing agreement that the U.S. will begin the process of removing North Korea from its list of terror-sponsoring states, the agreement drew strong criticism from the U.S. administration as Deputy National Security Advisor Elliott Abrams sent an e-mail to the administrators saying, “Pyongyang must verify that its regime no longer sponsors a terrorist group.”