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South-North Relations

Weekly Report on North Korea

본문영역

Weekly Report on North Korea No.

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관리자
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2002-12-09
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13422
1.

1. Domestic Affairs

  - The Standing Committee of North Korea's Supreme People's Assembly decreed Mt. Geumgang and Gaeseong as tourism and industrial regions, respectively, and adopted related laws. The steps reflect Pyongyang's willingness to accelerate its ongoing "economic improvement measures" that include introduction of capital from South Korea and other foreign sources.

  * The newspaper, Joseon Shinbo, reported on November 25 that work had begun in North Korea to redefine socialism's economic theory through the notion of "practical socialism" based on Kim Jong-il's writings.

  - During a central research debate session on patriotism on November 26 North Korea stressed the need to reinforce national defense capabilities by arming the population with the anti-Japan patriotic spirit. The move indicates a posture to strengthen its case against the United States by inspiring the North Koreans' patriotism. Through report sessions marking various events, North Korea pledged to tighten the regime's internal unity by emphasizing the "military-first" and other measures intended to shore up the party's policies, while highlighting the justification of its regime.

  * The Academy of Social Science held research debate sessions to mark the 50th anniversary (Nov. 25) of the academy's founding, the 2nd "enthusiasts' meeting" of the national literary correspondents (Nov. 24) and on the occasion (Nov. 21) of the 20th anniversary of Kim Jong-il's "great work" on the improvement of judiciary-prosecution project.

 

2. Relations with South Korea

  - North Korea resumed the mining-clearing work for the reconnection of inter-Korean railways and roads, which had been suspended due to procedural issues raised by the United Nations Command concerning notification of the mine-clearing crews. The step indicates the Pyongyang's intentions to maintain the inter-Korean cooperative atmosphere apart from its hardline attitude toward Washington.

  - In connection with the recent accidental deaths of two South Korean middle school girls by a U.S. military armored vehicle, North Korea sought to stir up a nationwide anti-American atmosphere through statements denouncing the United States in the name of the education ministry, the Joseon Student Committee, and the Joseon Democratic Lawyers' Association and through rallies by the Kimchaek Polytechnic University and others.

  - Two hundred sixty-two delegates from the Jeju provincial headquarters campaigning for aiding North Koreans visited North Korea as guests of the North's council for reconciliation among Koreans from November 25 to 30. The Jeju headquarters plans to donate a total of 4,000 tons of tangerines by the end of December.

 

3. External Affairs

  - North Korea said in a TV commentary on November 27 that its earlier assertion that it was "entitled to possess things more powerful than nuclear weapons" meant to convey the principle that Pyongyang had the right to possess nuclear weapons and that it was pursuing what it had a right to do. The commentary was interpreted as an indication of North Korea's hopes to settle the nuclear issue through dialogue.

  - Meanwhile, North Korea emphasized a hardline position through a newspaper Minju Joseon report on November 26. It said that it was ready for either dialogue or war with the United States, while maintaining that suspension of heavy oil deliveries was part of America's systemic breaches of the terms of Agreed Framework.

  - In a statement issued by the spokesman of its Red Cross society on November 27, North Korea expressed its willingness to resume the Japan visit program by the Japanese women who married after being abducted to North Korea, while denouncing Japan for delaying the 4th homeland visit agreed on during the North Korea-Japan Red Cross meeting.

  - North Korea emphasized its "friendship forged in blood" as it concluded with China an agreement on the mutual dispatch of delegations, exchange and cooperation in the health and education sectors.

  - North Korea said that an estimated 450 million people from some 520 political parties and organizations worldwide put their signatures on an international signature-collecting campaign, held between February and September, demanding withdrawal of U.S. forces stationed in Korea and supporting the June 15, 2000 South-North Joint Declaration.

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