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Pres. Lee to Meet N. Korea’s No. 2 Man in Beijing

Posted August. 04, 2008 03:09,   


President Lee Myung-bak will meet Kim Yong Nam, president of the Presidium of the DPRK Supreme People`s Assembly, in Beijing Friday.

The two will meet at a luncheon hosted by Chinese President Hu Jintao on the first day of President Lee’s two-day visit to attend the opening ceremony of the Beijing Summer Olympics, a key adviser to President Lee said yesterday.

Other sources said President Lee and Kim will sit together at a table of 15 to 25 people, separated by four to five other state guests.

“Though the two are scheduled to meet there, no attempt has been made to establish contact,” said a high-ranking official in Seoul. “Unless one side avoids talks, they could possibly exchange casual greetings and discuss impending inter-Korean issues when state guests wait for the luncheon to begin for some 10 minutes at a VIP room.”

President Lee and Kim could also run into each other again that day at the VIP room of Beijing’s main Olympic stadium, where they will briefly stay before attending the opening ceremony at 8 p.m.

Inter-Korean relations have strained over the shooting death of a South Korean tourist in the North’s Mount Geumgang resort and expulsion of South Korean personnel there.

A source at Seoul’s presidential office said, “We are preparing for the possibility of inter-Korean dialogue on bilateral issues when President Lee and Kim meet."