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Kim faults Pyongyang, Washington for impasse

Aug 01,2006
Former President Kim Dae-jung said he won’t go to North Korea unless he’s asked, and criticized North Korea for “playing a losing game,” by taking a hard-line position after firing its missiles, saying it is pleasing conservatives in Japan and the United States.
The leaders of the Democrats visited Mr. Kim at a library in Seoul named after him. Mr. Kim said he will visit the North only when Pyongyang says it wants to hear his position, said Lee Sang-yul, spokesman of the Democratic Party.
“If I insist on going, I will be treated as a weird person,” the Democratic Party spokesman quoted Mr. Kim as saying. “I just can’t go unilaterally.”
As tensions on the peninsula escalated in June, Mr. Kim canceled his plans to travel to North Korea for four days, starting June 27.
He also criticized the United States’ policy of pressuring the North. Citing Cuba, he said no communist country has collapsed under such pressure.
Mr. Kim also complained about current U.S.-South Korea relations. “We sent the third-largest contingent to Iraq and agreed to the U.S. forces’ relocation,” Mr. Kim said. “We have given enough, but the United States is picking on small things, and we should try to persuade the United States not to do so.”


by Chae Byung-gun


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