중앙데일리

Kim 'cannot shake regret' for his sons

Sept 06,2002
President Kim Dae-jung said at a luncheon meeting with foreign reporters Friday that the woes of his two sons were the greatest misfortune of his life.

The two sons, Kim Hong-up and Kim Hong-gul, have been indicted on charges of taking bribes.

"I cannot shake off the regret that I feel toward the Korean people and citizens of the world," President Kim said to a group of 140 foreign reporters in response to a question about the most personally and politically disappointing incident of his presidency.

Mr. Kim added that his efforts to overcome regionalism were also in vain.

President Kim's health was the greatest concern of the foreign reporters. Park Han-chun, president of the Seoul Foreign Correspondents' Club, said he was glad to find the president in good condition. Mr. Park said that he had been worried after reports on the president's sore throat.

Katsuhiro Kuroda, head of the Sankei Shimbun's South Korean branch, also said that he had confirmed that the rumors of the president's ill health were untrue.

"I have no health problems at all. You can see in person," said the president. He said that he caught cold after turning on the air conditioning during hot weather, and it had developed into pneumonia. He was treated in the hospital.

"I am 100 percent healthy," the president said. "I visited areas damaged by the recent flooding."

Mr. Kim said that he believed Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visit to North Korea would have major results. Mr. Koizumi will visit Pyeongyang on Sept. 17, the first Japanese premier to do so.

"I don't think that North Korea has invited the prime minister and arranged his visit only to send him back without any successful results," President Kim said.

by Kim Chong-hyuk




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