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South-North Relations

Weekly Report on North Korea

본문영역

Weekly Report on North Korea No.

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관리자
created
2003-08-06
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13890
InternalAffairs

Internal Affairs

o Chairman Kim Jong-il visited military units 675 and 669 and a goat pasture July 30-31. During the visits, he emphasized the need for commanders to check out combat preparedness and pay attention to soldiers' material livelihood.

- It is interesting to note that North Korea's media frequently omit exact dates of Kim's visits to military units and such instances of omitting the dates were increasing in July. At least five times there were no mention of the visit dates.

o Days away from the elections (August 3) of picking deputies to the 11th-term Supreme People's Assembly and regional people's assemblies, North Korea, by fomenting a festive election atmosphere, tried to show off in and out of the country that Kim Jong-il's "military-first" ideology and monolithic leadership system remained firm. Festive election atmosphere was created by mobilizing a variety of propaganda and agitation methods as well as newspaper, broadcasting and performances.

o North Korea observed July 30 the 57th anniversary of the proclamation of the law on the equality of the sexes. On the occasion, North Korea tried to tighten its internal unity in the face of increasing uncertainties over the recent nuclear issue, by stressing the gender equality and the role of female in the military-first era.

o North Korea built in August a mobile communication earth station in Pyongyang.It is christened Fatherland and is capable of accommodating 20,000 subscribers. However, high costs and information control will make it difficult for the communication service to spread widely anytime soon.

o The Joseon Philatelic Company tried to help vitalize the sagging economy by developing and selling international phone cards in Raseon City recently. It is regarded as an attempt to raise foreign businessmen's investment interest in North Korea.

o North Korea said the third Pyongyang International Exhibition of Scientific and Technological Books will be held August 18-21 as originally scheduled. The Joseon Tourism expressed the hope July 25 that introduction of advanced data on science and technology could enhance the level of underdeveloped science and technology.

Relations with South Korea

o Regarding America's deployment of its "rapid mobile brigade" August 1-10 and the conduct of the combined ROK-U.S. Eulchi Focus Lens exercise August 18-29, North Korea demanded to cease the military maneuvers, describing them as "war fuss intended for a preemptive nuclear strike against the North." The denunciation came in a statement issued July 31 by the spokesman of the DPRK's Committee for the Peaceful Unification of the Fatherland.

* North Korea also demanded an immediate cancellation of the "Eulchi Focus Lens nuclear war exercise plan and the plan to reinforce deployment of U.S. troops." It was contained in a telephone message the leader of the North Korean delegation to the Inter-Korean Ministerial Talks sent to his Southern counterpart on July 31.

o North Korea announced July 29 its unilateral cessation effective August 1 of its anti-Seoul underground broadcast, Voice of National Salvation, and on July 30 it requested South Korea to stop Seoul's broadcast to the North to reciprocate its measure. The request came in a telephone message sent by the leader of the North Korean delegation to the Inter-Korean Ministerial Talks.

o The second meeting of the Inter-Korean Working-level Consultations on Economic Cooperation System, held in Gaeseong July 29-31, adopted an agreement after discussing four agreements on inter-Korean economic cooperation, certificate of origin procedures and passage to and from the Gaeseong and Mt. Geumgang areas. It appears to have expanded the institutional devices to promote inter-Korean economic cooperation on a stable basis.

External Affairs

o North Korea has recently been bent on tightening internal control to cope with the situation all its media outlets call "US psychological slandering warfare designed to dismantle our regime" and put on pressures from the outside.

"The people in the North would never be duped into the US psychological slandering warfare and that they would continue on a path to socialism with a revolutionary conviction," said Radio Pyongyang on July 24.

o Central Broadcast maintained Japan has recently "intentionally aggravated" its relationship with North Korea on account of kidnapping and over the nuclear issue. North Korea said this was a deliberate and premeditated scheme to sidestep the issue of clearing up its past wrongs and to fire the opening salvo for invasion.

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