Kim’s quake aid for Japan

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Kim’s quake aid for Japan

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il donated $500,000 to pro-North Korean residents in Japan to help them recover from a killer quake and tsunami that left thousands dead and missing.

The aid from the cash-strapped country was announced yesterday in a brief dispatch from North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA).

Separately, North Korea’s Red Cross sent relief funds of $100,000 to its Japanese counterpart and expressed deep sympathy to the victims of the catastrophe, the KCNA said in a separate dispatch. The KCNA did not give any further details on whether there were any casualties among pro-North Korean residents.

An official of the pro-North Korean association in Tokyo told Yonhap News Agency by phone that some of the residents could have been killed during the disaster. He did not elaborate and asked not to be identified because he was not authorized to speak to media. Hundreds of thousands of Koreans live in Japan, many of them descendants of Koreans forcibly brought to Japan as laborers during Tokyo’s 1910-45 colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula.

The ethnic Korean community, however, was later divided into two groups that support either South or North Korea. North Korea and Japan have no diplomatic relations.

In another dispatch dated Wednesday, the KCNA reported that Kim Jong-il and his youngest son and leader-in-waiting Kim Jong-un enjoyed a performance of synchronized swimming at the Changgwang Health Complex in Pyongyang.


Related Korean Article[연합]

김정일, 지진피해 재일동포에 50만달러 위문금

김정일 북한 국방위원장이 대지진 참사를 겪은 재일동포에게 위문금 50만달러를 보내 위로했다고 조선중앙통신이 24일 보도했다.

김 위원장은 지난 2004년 10월 니가타현에서 발생한 강진으로 피해를 본 재일동포들에게 위문금 10만달러를 보내는 등 재일조선인총연합회(조총련) 계열 동포들이 재난을 겪을 때 종종 위문금을 전달한다. 북한은 고베 지진 당시에는 20만달러를 보냈다.

김 위원장은 또 고(故) 김일성 주석 생일(4.15)인 '태양절'이나 자신의 생일(2.16) 등 명절에도 '교육원조비' 등 명목으로 조총련에 돈을 보내기도 한다.

중앙통신은 앞서 조선(북한)적십자회 중앙위원회도 일본적십자사에 10만달러의 위문금을 보내고 막대한 인명 피해와 물질적 손실을 안은 강진 피해자와 유가족을 위로했다고 전했다.

조선적십자회는 지난 14일에는 장재언 위원장 명의의 전문을 고노에 다다테루(近衛忠煇) 일본적십자사 대표에게 보내 동북부 지방에서 발생한 지진 및 해일 피해자들을 위로했다.
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