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Pres. Lee Pledges Retaliation vs. N. Korea

Posted May. 21, 2010 11:26,   


President Lee Myung-bak pledged Thursday firm action against North Korea for sinking the South Korean naval patrol ship Cheonan.

“A scientific and objective investigation by the international investigation team has found that the Cheonan sinking was clearly a North Korean military provocation. We will take a firm action against North Korea,” he told Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd over the phone.

“North Korea has committed military provocations or terrorist attacks and denied them. Because of the clear evidence which no country or person can deny, however, this absurd argument will not work this time.”

President Lee will discuss follow-up measures with the National Security Council at the presidential office Friday morning.

The North denied sinking the Cheonan in a statement from its most powerful organization, the National Defense Commission. A commission spokesman said, “Since the enemy says the sinking of the Cheonan is related to us, we will send an investigation team of the National Defense Commission of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to the South to see the evidence.”

The statement carried by the North`s state-run Korean Central News Agency said the South fabricated the sinking and threatened an all-out war if Seoul imposes sanctions on Pyongyang in retaliation.

yongari@donga.com kyle@donga.com