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Hong Asks U.S. to Return Korean Property

Apr 14,1999
Hong Soon Young, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade asserted on April 14, 'We expect the return of Korean government property currently in use by the U.S. and a change in the status of the U.S. army as early as possible.'
Hong gave an address in the Korea-U.S. Association meeting and said, 'These problems should be resolved in the 21st century.'
It is the first time the minister has asked the U.S.' for a response on the subtle issue of the status of U.S. forces. The status of forces agreement or 'SOFA' is also a contentious issue, specifically to allow transfer of U.S. army criminals to face Korean courts has been suspended since September 1996. The property issue, including the the return of the U.S. embassy building and land in Seoul, is also pending.
He continued, 'America's world strategy sometimes cannot meet with Korea's policy directions and a continuing mature relationship is possible when there is fair and practical negotiation with each other.'
Hwashik Bong : trojans@joongang.co.kr


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