사이드바 영역으로 건너뛰기

게시물에서 찾기No fun, not at all! Here you'll find a selected collection of articles/reports about our, sometimes a kind of unfriendly, neighbours in the North. Please, don't wonder: I'll use all kind of sources, it includes also the reactionary media, such as ðÈàØìí.., if I'm thinking, that the reports/articles are credible. Of course some times it is only trash. But I think, that we are clever enough to check out what is credible or not.

371개의 게시물을 찾았습니다.

  1. 2005/01/21
    "북한": 재미있는 발달
    no chr.!

개성공업지구..

LONG LIVE THE EXPLOITATION

AND OPPRESSION OF DPRK's

WORKING CLASS..

..by the S.K. capitalist class and N.K. monarchy!!

 

 

When the S.K. capitalists and their gov't are watching, for instance last week's struggle in Pohang, they may dream about the perfect possibilities in the DPRK.. There no-one comes to the idea to go on strike, even he/she is getting paid only $50/50,000 Won(migrant workers in S.K., at least, are getting 500,000 W) per month(some people are calling it "salary"). And if the N.K. workers really would come to the(complete stupid - or better deadly) idea to fight for a normal payment... YODOK, or any other concentration camp, is waiting!! And I'm 100 percent sure that nobody in S.K., especially in the ruling class, would ask about him or her, unless the production/profit-making-machine will get in serious problems..

 

And not only the "real" ruling class profits from this situation: even, for example the so-called "alternative/left" media is trying to take a piece of the cake. Until some days ago Hankyoreh(the English section) had TWO advertisment clips for the Gaeseong Industrial Complex(GIC) - http://www.kidmac.com - on its main page. Today there is "just" one clip about GIC..

 

 

Last week(7.18) IHT/NYT published following article about GIZ:

 

North Korea's well-isolated capitalism


Just north of the demilitarized zone dividing the Korean Peninsula, in possibly the world's most heavily guarded special economic enclave, 500 managers from the South and 7,000 workers from the North are engaged in a capitalist experiment that is anathema to the United States.
 
The South Koreans recently gave a tour of the enclave, the Kaesong Industrial Park, to 200 foreign business executives, diplomats and journalists. The hosts expressed optimism that it would bring peace to the peninsula, then they led the visitors through factories churning out goods for markets in the South and elsewhere.
 
In one of the 15 factories, Taesung Hata, a cosmetics company, about 500 workers wearing dark blue uniforms and white hats operated machines that produced plastic cosmetic containers.
 
Next door, 1,500 workers sat in rows of desks with sewing machines, below ceiling fans and decorative red flowers, making orthopedic shoes called Stafild that were described as "Shoes for Unification."
 
To hear the South Korean hosts tell it, when the special economic zone is completed in 2012, it will house 2,000 companies and employ 700,000 North Koreans.
 
Yet Kaesong's significance is larger still, they say, because it will nudge the North toward embracing economic reforms and opening up to the world, the way Shenzhen did in China two decades ago, and open the path, as the shoes suggest, toward reunification.
 
(The hosts also said they had considered canceling the June 22 tour, which coincided with rising tensions over North Korean preparations for missile tests, but decided against it.)
 
Kaesong is South Korea's biggest project in what some call unification by "small steps," or "de facto" unification. The South does not want formal unification for a few more decades, but its strategy is to narrow the yawning gap of half a century of division through various projects, from manufacturing in Kaesong to uniting the two Koreas' different Braille characters for the blind and sign language for the deaf.
 
"It's de facto unification," said Ko Gyoung Bin, who oversees the 18- month-old Kaesong project at the Ministry of Unification in Seoul. "It's already under way. Unlike the German model, it won't happen suddenly."
 
The two Koreas agreed on building Kaesong when the former South Korean president, Kim Dae Jung, and the North's leader, Kim Jong Il, met in Pyongyang in June 2000.
 
Since then, the exchanges have become so routine that sports authorities on both sides are moving toward fielding a unified team for the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics.
 
With cultural, academic, business, political or military exchanges going on between the two Koreas nearly every week, 80,000 South Koreans visited the North last year.
 
That did not include South Korean visitors to Kumgang Mountain, a North Korean resort opened to foreigners eight years ago. Kumgang has been visited by 1.25 million South Koreans.
 
South Korean regional and local governments, regardless of political leanings, have also undertaken projects with counterparts in the North. More than 60 private organizations now send South Koreans north to assist on agricultural, health and other projects.
 
"We go to North Korea, where we work with our counterparts to show them how to use certain agricultural machines or how to breed better cattle," said Kang Young Shik, director of the Korean Sharing Movement, a private group that has undertaken the Braille and sign-language projects. "They need help from us, though they also feel the need to compete with us."
 
Cho Yong Nam, a director general in the Unification Ministry, said South Korea had projects in 27 out of 206 cities and counties in the North. The common theme, he said, is to raise standards in the North so that, in a unified Korea, North Koreans would not constitute "a displaced, misfortunate minority group."
 
Companies that have come to Kaesong, which is managed by Hyundai Asan, a private company, have received tax breaks and other support from the South Korean government.
 
A new highway and railroad traverse the demilitarized zone before reaching Kaesong, about 65 kilometers, or 40 miles, northwest of Seoul. Soldiers stand watch on either side of the DMZ, with its barricades, barbed wire fences and land mines.
 
In working with North Koreans, South Koreans have said, they have encountered the sometimes unexpected effects of their division: North Korean construction workers, for example, were rated only one-third as efficient as their counterparts from the South. Many North Koreans, with little experience handling machines, have required extensive training.
 
Sometimes, South and North Koreans had trouble communicating because the language spoken on either side of the DMZ has changed significantly. (One project supported by the South is a unified dictionary with new words that have appeared since the division, or words whose meanings have changed.)
 
Last year, the activity here expanded trade between the two Koreas to more than $1 billion for the first time, though only a few of the companies here are believed to be profitable.
 
Kaesong has also become an obstacle in negotiations between South Korea and the United States over a free-trade agreement. The South wants products made here to be included in the agreement, arguing, so far in vain, that most of the materials derive from the South.
 
The Bush administration, which has tried to isolate the North instead of engaging it, recently criticized Kaesong after long withholding judgment. It accused the South of economically propping up the North, as the United States was financially squeezing the North elsewhere.
 
In a recent opinion article in The Wall Street Journal, Jay Lefkowitz, President George W. Bush's special envoy for human rights in North Korea, said projects like Kaesong strengthened Kim Jong Il by pumping "hundreds of millions of dollars into the North, with more to come."
 
Lefkowitz also said he had doubts about whether the North Korean workers actually got their wages.
 
Ko, of the Unification Ministry, rejected such accusations, saying the North Korean workers had to sign their names when they received their wages. The wages average $57 a month, nearly triple the average in the North, he said.
 
According to Hyundai Asan, employees work 48 hours a week. They were picked by North Korean officials, then approved by South Koreans. About 80 percent are high school graduates.
 
Visitors were allowed to speak to the North Korean workers, but supervisors and North Korean guides on the tour discouraged anything but innocuous answers.
 
Peter Beck, who is the Northeast Asia director for the International Crisis Group in Seoul and took part in the tour, said he was impressed by the facilities but that it was still unclear how much of the wages went to the workers.
 
At Shinwon, a garment manufacturer, 300 North Korean workers were cutting and sewing shirts, dresses and blouses in a large, brightly lighted, air-conditioned factory.
 
"I've seen factories of this type in Kenya, Bangladesh, India and Papua New Guinea, and the conditions here compare very favorably," said Frank Gamble, a retired banker and an official with the Australia-New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Seoul, as he toured the Shinwon factory. "What South Korea is trying to do here in Kaesong, we've already seen in China and Vietnam and elsewhere. The United States was against investing in Vietnam, but now they're beating down doors to get there."
 
A North Korean official accompanying the visitors expressed anger at criticism from Americans.
 
"I think they're ignorant," he said, refusing to give his name. "They just criticize everybody, including China on human rights. They just want to impose their standards on the world."

http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/07/18/news/pyongyang.php 
 

진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

北 미사일.. #8

 

 

 

The S.K. bourgeois daily JoongAng Ilbo reports today following:

 

North calls alert..

 

North Korea has ordered wartime mobilization preparation for its soldiers and citizens, a senior intelligence official said yesterday. The order was delivered to military and civilian leaders just after midnight Sunday, four hours before the United Nations Security Council adopted a resolution condemning the North's arms and missile programs.
..
The order, which was not broadcast by radio or television, was the first in 13 years. In March 1993, readiness was increased as North Korea pulled out of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
The intelligence official said he assessed the order, in Kim Jong-il's name, as an effort to rally the nation behind him. He said soldiers were recalled to barracks, camouflage was being rolled out and civilian travel had been restricted.

..

http://joongangdaily.joins.com/200607/18/200607182133430879900090309031.html

 

Wow, what a great idea!!

 

 

DPRK's KCNA published yesterday - just a little belated - following:

DPRK Foreign Ministry Refutes "Resolution of UN Security Council"

 



 

 

 

진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

새로운 자본주의

The HK based magazine Asia Times published following story 5.26..

 

North Korea's creepy-crawly capitalism
 

VLADIVOSTOK, Russia and BANGKOK, Thailand - North Korean capitalism is thriving - just not inside North Korea. Pyongyang has steadily established a string of legitimate and less legitimate front companies across East and Southeast Asia, aimed at earning the cash-strapped government badly needed hard currency. And, by all indications, business is booming.

 

Consider, for instance, Cafe Pyongyang, one of Vladivostok's most popular eateries. It is so popular, in fact, that there are plans to build a new restaurant in the shape of a North Korean peasant's hut, similar to the one where the late leader Kim Il-sung was born in 1912. Here, gracefully clothed North Korean women serve up traditional Korean fare, while patrons sing popular Korean tunes.

 

Similarly themed restaurants have popped up in Beijing and Shanghai in China, and Phnom Penh and Siem Reap in Cambodia. But this by no means represents a North Korean business diaspora similar to the ethnic-Chinese community that now controls a large swath of Southeast Asia's economy. Rather, the Pyongyang government owns and operates all of the eateries - and their regional interests reach far beyond restaurants.

North Koreans are becoming skilled capitalists outside their own strict centrally controlled country. For instance, they own a 15-story, 160-room hotel, complete with a nightclub and a sauna, in the northeastern Chinese city of Shenyang. There, government entrepreneurs also run a North Korean-owned computer software  company and an Internet service provider. Even more imaginatively, a company in Dandong, a Chinese city just across the Yalu River from North Korea, acquired the exclusive rights to sell North Korean medicines on the international market - including a brand called Cheongchun No 1, a home-made version of Viagra.

 

Angry enemies, profiting allies

 

While China is welcoming, North Korean companies have gotten a rise out of Japan and the United States, which contend that Pyongyang uses these concerns sometimes to procure raw materials and dual-use technologies clandestinely to support its missile and nuclear-weapons programs.

 

Until recently, North Korea was able to acquire sensitive industrial components and chemicals through companies in Japan, which were affiliated with the pro-Pyongyang General Association of Korean Residents, or Chosen Soren. But when the Japanese authorities began to crack down on this trade a few years ago, the North Koreans began buying more goods from Thailand.

 

In November 2002, a Tokyo-based, Chosen Soren-affiliated company called Meishin - or Myongshin in Korean - attempted to export three power-control devices to North Korea. But when the company informed customs of the planned shipment, Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry responded that Meishin required special permission under regulations governing the export of dual-purpose equipment that can be used in, or converted for use in, the production of weapons of mass destruction. The power-control devices could, for instance, be used to stabilize the heavy flow of electric current to uranium-enrichment centrifuges.

 

Meishin (Myongshin) failed to procure the appropriate documents, but on April 4, 2003, it shipped those same devices to a Thai telecommunications company, Loxley Pacific, which in turn planned to ship them to North Korea's Daesong General Trading Co. But customs in Hong Kong, where the ship stopped on its way to Bangkok, acted on a tip-off from the Japanese, seized the devices and returned them to Japan.

Loxley Pacific has major commercial interests in North Korea, including the operation of a mobile-telephone network, and was a perfect conduit for the stabilizers to North Korea. A Loxley spokesman at the time insisted that the devices were not destined for North Korea's nuclear program.

 

"The electricity situation is poor in North Korea ... They need stabilizers to avoid hurting their household appliances," he said in a press interview at the time. It is possible, though not altogether likely, that Loxley was unaware of what the dual-use stabilizers were actually intended for.

 

Thailand, which has cultivated close commercial ties with Pyongyang, recently replaced Japan as North Korea's third-largest trading partner. Two-way trade with Thailand was US$165 million in 2002, rose to $265 million in 2003, and jumped again to $332 million in 2004. In 2005, North Korea imported $207 million worth of goods from Thailand, and exports reached $134 million, or a total two-way trade of $341 million, according to statistics from the Thai Customs Department.

 

Thailand exports rice, fish, fuel oil, textiles, chemicals and pharmaceuticals to North Korea, while it imports fertilizer, optical equipment, and some iron and steel - at least according to official records. It may seem odd that Thailand, with a well-developed fertilizer industry and as a net fuel importer, would import fertilizer and export fuel oil.

But it seems to indicate off-balance-sheet barter deals, which are famously favored by the North Koreans. In exchange for oil, they give fertilizer to their Thai partners, who, in turn, repackage it using locally produced chemicals of questionable quality, or fertilizers received as aid from South Korea, and sell it at a favorable price to countries such as Laos, Cambodia or Myanmar.

 

Opaque trade flows

 

It's exactly that lack of transparency that has North Korea's critics in Washington and Tokyo fuming. North Korea's embassy in Bangkok is its biggest in Southeast Asia, and it operates in conjunction with two locally registered companies, both of which have North Korean citizens listed as directors and allegedly deal in electronics components, ceramics and consumer goods.

 

The first, Kosun Import Export, was set up in 1991 and operates out of a small apartment block not far from the North Korean Embassy. The other was set up in 1995 and was first called Kotha Supply Import Export, but is now registered as Star Bravo. The company is reported to be a subsidiary of the Daesong Group, which is North Korea's main state-owned trading corporation and the overt arm of Bureau 39, the clandestine foreign-exchange-earning branch of the ruling Korean Workers' Party.

 

Daesong operates openly under that name in Hong Kong, but no longer in Singapore, where in 2001 it changed its registered name to the more innocuous-sounding Laurich International. In Macau, Daesong was known as Zokwang Trading. But the North Koreans fled the former Portuguese territory last September after the US Treasury Department identified a local bank, Banco Delta Asia, as a "financial institution of primary money-laundering concern". The bank, the US authorities asserted, "has provided services for over 20 years to North Korean government agencies and associated front companies".

The Treasury Department accused "North Korean entities" of being engaged in criminal activities, including the counterfeiting of US currency. The naming of Delta Asia in particular caused depositors to rush the bank and withdraw their holdings. The Macau government had to step in to prevent the bank from collapsing, and Delta Asia finally agreed to dissolve its North Korean links. Subsequently, Zokwang - the first North Korean trading company in the region and active in Macau since the mid-1970s - evacuated its office in the territory and moved its operations to the Zhuhai Special Economic Zone just across the border in mainland China.

 

The Delta Asia affair has had a snowball effect on everyone doing business with Pyongyang, veritably criminalizing dealing with the regime. Nigel Cowie, the British general manager of the Pyongyang-based Daedong Credit Bank, stated in a speech at an informal meeting hosted by the European Business Association of Pyongyang in the US on May 4: "The result of these actions against banks doing business with the DPRK [Democratic People's Republic of Korea] is that criminal activities go underground and are harder to trace, and legitimate businesses either give up or end up appearing suspicious by being forced to use clandestine methods."

 

Foreign customers conducting legitimate businesses in Pyongyang, he said, "have been told by their bankers overseas to stop receiving remittances from the DPRK, otherwise their accounts will be closed". Now, vast amounts of cash are being carried physically to banks overseas, which would indeed appear suspicious in the eyes of international law-enforcement agencies.

 

The US action raised important questions about the nature of North Korean capitalism, and underscored the dilemma the world faces from a cash-starved, nuclear-armed Pyongyang. Washington, no doubt, realizes that more international trade and economic development is essential for Pyongyang to move forward and evolve into a responsible regional player. Some North Korea-watchers contend that Washington's recent intervention in Macau will only discourage what was a slow but sure effort by Pyongyang to integrate with the global trading economy and promote an experimental measure of free enterprise, similar to what the Chinese communists did in the late 1970s before implementing their capitalist reforms.

South Korea, in particular, has long advocated economic engagement with North Korea, arguing that unless the North is urged and helped to develop and strengthen its economy, both the South and the North would likely collapse upon reunification. For this reason, Seoul has openly fallen out with its US ally on this score.

 

Others argue that the flow of more hard currency into Pyongyang's coffers only serves to delay the inevitable collapse of one of the world's most atavistic regimes, thus prolonging the extreme suffering of the North Korean people. There is little or nothing to suggest that the money that the North Korean front companies are earning in the region is being employed for social development at home or spent on basic necessities, such as putting food on the tables of the country's starving people.

 

Whatever the case, North Korea is likely to find new ways to continue its commercial drive across the region - albeit more cautiously. Perhaps that's where far-flung places like Vladivostok will come into play. At one of the tables at Cafe Pyongyang, two North Korean officials recently talked business with a Russian entrepreneur. They offered North Korean workers in exchange for timber from Siberia's vast forests, where North Koreans have for years toiled as lumberjacks.

 

The US may try to tighten the screws on North Korea's expanding global businesses, but there are always others - Russia, China and Thailand - who are more than willing to do business with an enterprising Pyongyang.

 

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Korea/HE26Dg02.html 


 

 

 

진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

새로운 소문

Yesterday IHT reported following..

Governments alert to possible North Korean missile activity

North Korea has reportedly moved a ballistic missile capable of reaching the United States to a launching site, but officials in Seoul and Tokyo said they saw no reliable signs that the North intended to test the missile soon.
 
Such a test would aggravate Pyongyang's relations with Japan and the United States, among others. Experts said that North Korean long-range missiles could deliver small warheads containing chemical and biological weapons, but that the North had not yet mastered the technology to fit its missiles with nuclear warheads.
 
North Korea last tested a ballistic missile in 1998. Although analysts in the region doubt that Pyongyang would risk economic sanctions and other fallout from Washington and Tokyo with a missile test, it might make preparations for a launch - under full surveillance by U.S. military satellites - to rattle nerves in the region and force American concessions in its confrontation with Washington.
 
A Defense Ministry official in Seoul, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the government was trying to verify reports about the Taepodong-2 missile.
 
"So far there is not enough credibility" in the reports, he said, without giving further details.
 
Earlier Friday, NHK television and the Kyodo News Agency in Japan, citing unnamed sources, said that movement had been observed near a missile base in northeastern North Korea since early this month.
 
South Korean news media later cited unnamed government officials as saying that they, too, detected such activities but that there was no sign of an imminent test.
 
Foreign Minister Taro Aso of Japan told a parliamentary committee in Tokyo that Japanese officials "understand that a missile has been brought to the site."
 
Japan's chief cabinet secretary, Shinzo Abe, said: "At this point we do not feel there is imminent danger of a missile launch," adding that Japan had been gathering intelligence.
 
American experts said that the Taepodong-2 ballistic missile has a range of more than 6,700 kilometers, or 4,200 miles, making it capable of hitting Alaska with a light payload.
 
A different version of the Taepodong- 2, which U.S. experts have said was also under development, has a range of 15,000 kilometers, enough to reach the U.S. mainland.
 
North Korea shocked Japan in 1998 by launching a Taepodong-1 missile over its territory and into the Pacific. That missile had a range of up to 4,000 kilometers, and may be capable of reaching some islands in the Hawaiian chain, as well as U.S. military bases in the region.
 
The United States and North Korea have been locked in a standoff over the North's nuclear weapons programs. Washington has been increasing financial pressure on the isolated North to force it to return to nuclear disarmament talks, but the North has so far resisted such attempts, which it considers an effort to topple its Communist regime.
 
On Thursday, The New York Times reported that top advisers to President George W. Bush were considering ways to improve relations with North Korea, including talks for a peace treaty with Pyongyang, once it returns to international talks on ending its nuclear weapons program.
 
In a report in March, the California- based Center for Nonproliferation Studies, a nongovernmental organization, said North Korea did not have an operational missile that could hit the continental United States, and nor had it demonstrated the capability to make a nuclear weapon small enough to be part of a missile warhead.
 
"North Korea would probably require several years and additional flight-tests to develop a reliable ballistic missile system capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to the continental United States," the report said.

 

 

 

But perhaps it will be just a welcome present for DJ Kim, when he will visit the DPRK next month... harrharr.. WHO KONWS........

진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

USA vs DPRK..

IHT, NYT published yesterday following article..

 

U.S. may try new bid for North Korea deal

President George W. Bush's top advisers have recommended a broad new approach to dealing with North Korea that would include beginning negotiations on a peace treaty even while efforts to dismantle its nuclear program are still under way, according to senior administration officials and Asian diplomats.
Aides say Bush is very likely to approve the new approach, which has been hotly debated among different factions within the administration. But he will not do so unless North Korea returns to multinational negotiations over its nuclear programs. The talks have been stalled since September.
North Koreans have long demanded a peace treaty, which would replace the 1953 armistice ending the Korean War.
For several years after he first took office, Bush vowed not to end North Korea's economic and diplomatic isolation until it entirely dismantled its nuclear program. That stance later softened, and the administration said some benefits to North Korea could begin to flow as significant dismantling took place.
Now, if the president allows talks about a peace treaty to take place on a parallel track with six-nation talks on disarmament, it will signal another major change of tactics.
The decision to consider a change may have been influenced in part by growing concerns about Iran's nuclear program. One senior Asian official who has been briefed on the administration's discussions of what to do next said, "There is a sense that they can't leave Korea out there as a model for what the Iranians hope to become - a nuclear state that can say no to outside pressure."
But it is far from clear that North Korea would engage in any new discussions, especially if they included talks of political change, human rights, terrorism and an opening of the country, topics that the administration has insisted would have to be part of any comprehensive discussions with North Korea.
With the war in Iraq and the nuclear dispute with Iran as distractions, many top officials have all but given up hope that North Korea's government will either disarm or collapse during Bush's remaining time in office. Increasingly, they blame two of Bush's negotiating partners, South Korea and China, which have poured aid into North Korea even while the United States has tried to cut off its major sources of revenue.
In Bush's first term, he said repeatedly that he would never "tolerate" a nuclear North Korea. Now he rarely discusses it. Instead, he has held meetings in the Oval Office with escapees from the North and used those events to discuss its prison camps and its treatment of its people.
Bush has also been under subtle pressure to change the first-term talk of speeding regime change from people like Henry Kissinger, secretary of state under Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford.
"Focusing on regime change as the road to denuclearization confuses the issue," Kissinger wrote in a long essay that appeared Tuesday in The Washington Post. Noting that the negotiations have been conducted by Christopher Hill, a seasoned diplomat who played a major role in the Bosnian peace accords, Kissinger said, "Periodic engagement at a higher level is needed."
A classified National Intelligence Estimate on North Korea, which was circulated among senior officials this year, concluded that the North has probably created enough fuel for more than half a dozen nuclear weapons since the beginning of Bush's administration and is continuing to produce roughly a bomb's worth of new plutonium each year.
But in a show of caution after the discovery of flaws in intelligence on Iraq, the assessment left unclear whether North Korea had actually turned that fuel into weapons.
With the six-nation negotiations appearing to go nowhere, the drive to come up with a broader strategy was propelled by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and one of her top aides, Philip Zelikow, who drafted two papers describing the new approach.
Those papers touched off what one senior official called "a blizzard of debate" over the next steps that eventually included Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney, who has been widely described by current and former officials as having led the drive in Bush's first term to make sure the North received no concessions from the United States until all its weapons and weapon sites were taken apart.
It is unclear where Cheney stands on the new approach that emerged from the State Department.
Now, said one official who has participated in the recent internal debate, "I think it is fair to say that many in the administration have come to the conclusion that dealing head-on with the nuclear problem is simply too difficult."
The official added, "So the question is whether it would help to try to end the perpetual state of war" that has existed, at least on paper, for 53 years. "It may be another way to get there."
An agreement that was signed in September by North Korea and the five other nations involved in the talks - the United States, South Korea, China, Japan and Russia - commits the North to give up its weapons and rejoin the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty "at an early date" but leaves vague what would have to come first: disarmament or a series of steps to aid the North.
It also included a sentence that paves the way for the initiative recommended to Bush, declaring that "the directly related parties will negotiate a permanent peace regime on the Korean Peninsula at an appropriate separate forum." But it does not specify what steps North Korea would have to take first.
As described by administration officials, none of whom would speak on the record about deliberations inside the White House, Bush's aides envision starting negotiations on a formal peace treaty that would include the original signatories of the armistice: China, North Korea and the United States, which signed on behalf of the United Nations.
They would also add South Korea, now the world's 11th-largest economy, which declined to sign the original armistice.
Japan, Korea's colonial ruler in the first half of the 20th century, would be excluded, as would Russia.
A National Security Council spokesman declined to comment on any internal deliberations on North Korea policy and referred all questions to the State Department, which has handled the negotiations with the North.
In justifying its refusal to return to talks, the North Koreans have complained bitterly about financial sanctions by the United States aimed at closing down the North's banking activities in Macao and elsewhere in Asia.
Officials said that even if peace treaty negotiations started, those sanctions would continue.
Some intelligence officials say they believe the North's complaints may have arisen in part because they affected a secretive operation that finances the personal activities of Kim Jong Il, the North Korean leader, including the money he spends for entertainment.
 
 
 
 
The rightwing daily Chosun Ilbo is writing following..
 

U.S. ‘to Shift N.Korea Approach to Peace Talks’


The U.S. is considering a new policy for approaching North Korea that would simultaneously seek to deal with bringing the North back to six-party talks on their nuclear ambitions, as well as discuss changing the armistice put in place after the Korean War, to a peace treaty, reported the New York Times on Thursday. "The idea seems to have been borne of a recognition in the U.S. of criticism that they have painted North Korea into a corner,” said Prof. Kim Sung-han of the Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security. Washington has so far been hoping to box the North in from all sides with pressure over its human rights record and alleged financial crimes - an approach South Korea has been unhappy about.

But U.S. President George W. Bush is reportedly adamant that the overriding requirement is that the North come back to the six-nation negotiating table and give up its nuclear ambitions. If this happens, negotiations on a peace treaty could happen separately from the six-party talks. That is already outlined in a joint statement agreed in the six-party talks in September last year, which says any peace treaty will be discussed “in another forum.” The South Korean Foreign Ministry’s North America bureau head Cho Tae-yong said, “This is not a new idea. It’s similar to what our government has been insisting on all along.”

Thus if Pyongyang returns to the six-party talks, there are likely to be two forums, one addressing the nuclear problem and one a peace framework. The New York Times says the U.S. is considering a four-party framework for peace negotiations bringing together South and North Korea, the U.S. and China. Song Min-soon, Seoul’s chief presidential secretary for security policy and foreign affairs, said last year the six-party talks are the wrong place to discuss a peace framework. He added four-party talks that already got underway at one stage were a more likely setup. These had been proposed by former president Kim Young-sam and former U.S. president Bill Clinton at a summit in Jeju in April 1996, and three rounds took place through 1998.

One carrot for North Korea’s return to the six-party talks is the eventual normalization of ties with the U.S. But no plans have been finalized, and it is especially unclear if the hawkish U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney will countenance the plan. There is little chance that the Bush administration will drop the matter of North Korea’s human rights abuses and alleged counterfeiting, thus making the North’s swift return to the talks improbable.

진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

매일 한국 자본주의..

Yonhap wrote 5.8 and 5.9 following shit...

 

S. Korean labor minister cautions against excessive concern over labor rights in

 

South Korea's labor minister urged the international community on Monday not to hastily conclude that the inter-Korean industrial complex in Kaesong is vulnerable to labor rights abuse.

Speaking to a group of Seoul-based foreign correspondents, Lee Sang-soo stressed that North Korea's working conditions cannot be compared blindly with those seen in other nations.

"Some foreign nations are showing sensitive responses to the wage level at the Kaesong industrial complex, claiming it is too low," Lee said. "Taking North Korea's unique system and its community into account, however, different interpretations are available. Making a hasty judgment should be restrained."
His remarks came in response to growing concern by foreigners, especially U.S. officials, over the low wages being paid to thousands of North Korean workers and a lack of transparency over how they are remunerated. The industrial zone is being hailed as a perfect model of economic cooperation between the two Koreas, which have been divided for half a century by a heavily armed demilitarized zone.

The complex, created three years ago in North Korea's border city of Kaesong, is aimed at combining South Korean capital and expertise with the North's cheap land and labor.

During a public lecture in Washington in March, Jay Lefkowitz, the U.S. envoy on North Korean human rights, argued that North Korean workers in the zone receive pitifully low wages and are not protected by full labor rights, raising the need for the International Labor Organization to monitor the situation.

The envoy underlined the fact that North Korean laborers get paid less than US$2 a day.

Officials at the Unification Ministry, which handles Seoul's policy toward Pyongyang, hit back at Lefkowitz's criticism, saying it was misplaced.

Each worker gets an average of $67 a month, considerably more than the communist country's average monthly wage of $14, they pointed out.

South Korea's labor minister said the government will be prepared when U.S. officials broach the subject of labor rights at the Kaesong complex at forthcoming free trade agreement talks between Seoul and Washington. The point of contention is whether to include goods produced there among made-in-Korea products in any possible FTA deal.

South Korea wants them to be recognized as its own in order to legitimize them, a proposal the U.S. finds unacceptable given its brooding standoff with the North.

Lee also vowed to step up efforts to address the polarization of the country's labor market.

Regular workers at larger companies are protected by powerful labor unions, while small-and medium-sized firms hire a growing number of part-time workers who are vulnerable to lay-offs, he said.

"So, the government's policy of increasing flexibility in the labor market will target regular workers at large companies," he said.

 

Unification minister visits Kaesong amid U.S. criticism of joint comple

 

Seoul's top official on North Korean
affairs, Unification Minister Lee Jong-seok, on Tuesday said the government will continue its joint project with communist North Korea to build an industrial complex in the North's border town of Kaesong despite "any difficulties."
The remarks came during his one-day trip to the joint industrial complex, but it was believed to have offered Seoul's view on Washington's skepticism about the inter-Korean project.

"We will achieve our goal no matter what difficulties lie ahead. I promise North and South Korea will never stop the Kaesong project despite any changes to the state of things on the Korean Peninsula," the unification minister said.

He crossed the heavily-armed inter-Korean border back to South Korea shortly before 5 p.m.

One of the main joint economic projects being conducted by the divided Koreas, the Kaesong complex is touted as a fruit of inter-Korean rapprochement following the historic summit between then South Korean President Kim Dae-jung and North Korean leader Kim Jong-il in 2000.

More than 6,500 North Korean workers are already working for a dozen South Korean firms operating in the joint complex, with the number of employees expected to increase to over 350,000 by 2012 when the industrial complex moves into full swing, according to officials at the Unification Ministry.

However, several U.S. officials, including Washington's special envoy for North Korean human rights Jay Lefkowitz, have expressed concerns that the joint economic project may end up funneling billions of dollars to support the North's cash-stripped regime while doing little to help the North's people, let alone inter-Korean relations.

The unification minister said the Kaesong complex will provide a venue where "North and South Korea work to pursue their common interests, and now I am very confident of it."
The United States and the international community have been pressuring the communist North to improve its human rights
conditions despite a continued stalemate in international negotiations over the North's nuclear weapons program.

Pyongyang denies having any human rights problems, calling the U.S. accusations part of a smear campaign.

Seoul refuses to publicly pressure the communist state to change its ways, but claims its economic assistance for the impoverished North is helping millions of North Koreans enjoy their most basic human right; the right to live.

"At least since 2000 when we began providing assistance to the North, no one there has starved to death," the unification minister said in Seoul last week in a special lecture for the presidential National Unification Advisory Council's delegates from North and South American countries.

North Korea has relied on assistance from the South and other international relief agencies to feed a large number of its 23 million population since the mid 1990s, while the country is expected to fall far short again of producing enough food this year.

The South Korean minister was accompanied by Hyun Jeong-eun,chairwoman of South Korea's Hyundai Group, and a group of about 160 officials from his ministry and South Korean firms currently operating in the Kaesong complex, according to ministry officials.

The unification minister also visited the office of an inter-Korean economic promotion committee where resident representatives from the two Koreas hold weekly meetings and consultations.

He also hosted a lunch for the visiting delegation at the famous Chanamsan Hotel in downtown Kaesong before visiting historic sites in what was the capital of an ancient Korean kingdom, according to ministry officials.

 

 

 

NORTH KOREAN WORKERS ARE ALSO WORKERS AND THEY SHOULD HAVE ...at least... THE SAME RIGHTS LIKE S. KOREAN WORKERS!!!

 

HUMAN AND LABOUR RIGHTS FOR ALL WORKERS!!!

진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

금강산...

The German magazine Der Spiegel published 3.13 following article about the Geumgangsan ressort, or better one of the S. Korean colonies in the DPRK...

 

Tourism in North Korea
 
Hyundai's Holiday Gulag

By Wieland Wagner

North Korean wouldn't normally spring to mind as a choice holiday destination. But hundreds of thousands of tourists are flowing into the secretive realm of dictator Kim Jong Il as part of vacations organized by the South Korean conglomerate Hyundai.

 

As morning sun rises over North Korea's east coast, it bathes Kumgangsan, the Diamond Mountain region, in a fiery red light. Workers emerge from a barracks in the valley, their bodies bundled up against the bitter cold. The only promise of heat comes from a giant propaganda poster that all workers are forced to pass: "Ten thousand lives for General Kim Jong Il, the sun of the 21st century."

A normal day in the realm of the "Dear Leader" begins with strictly adhered to rules that make little sense to outsiders. All workers are permitted to ride their bicycles up to the barracks gate, where they dismount as if on command. After slowly walking past the guard booth, they then push their bikes for another 200 meters along the road -- which has almost no car traffic. Only then do they hop on and begin peddling again.

This odd ritual can be observed from the Kumgang Hotel, a twelve-storey building built decades ago by the Stalinist founder of North Korea Kim Il Sung as a relaxation center for loyal officials. A propaganda painting in front of the building depicting Kim as a benevolent figure surrounded by a swarm of children serves as a reminder that still has a godlike status despite dying twelve years ago. Officially, the father of the country's current leader
Kim Jong Il remains president, even in death.

 

The Kumgang Hotel at first was neglected by the junior dictator. But now it's been restored to its former glory, renovated from the ground up by South Korean firm Hyundai Asan -- to provide adequate accommodation for hordes of tourists from the capitalist south.

Kumgangsan, which Hyundai manages with the permission of the "Dear Leader," has become an extremely popular travel destination for guests from South Korea. 400,000 tourists will arrive this year alone, one-third more than in 2005, says Hyundai executive Kim Young Hyun. Many visitors hope to get a glimpse of the secretive north, a country which still considers the south the enemy. At the same time, the tourists can experience first-hand how quickly the two Koreas are growing together, largely unnoticed by the rest of the world.

Capitalist enclave in the north

What about the small matter of North Korea's controversial
nuclear program? Or the economic sanctions imposed by the United States, because the dictator from the north, desperately in need of hard currency, has allegedly been counterfeiting US currency? Judging by the amount of construction going on in Kumgangsan, global concerns over a potential crisis on the Korean peninsula seem to be falling largely on deaf ears here. Indeed, the renovated hotel is only one of many projects with which Hyundai is transforming the region into a blossoming southern enclave.

Behind a green fence, a crane hoists construction materials onto a site destined for a new building that will carry great political symbolism. When completed next year, the building will house a reunification facility for families torn apart by the 1950-1953 Korean War. And in a nearby valley, another project is underway that seems highly out of place in Kim's gulag-like state: Two Buddhist monks from South Korea are supervising the reconstruction of an historic temple that was destroyed in the war.

Hyundai also has plans to open a golf course in Kumgangsan in September. Until now, the bourgeois sport was seen as the height of decadence in this country of workers and farmers. Of course, the Communist proletariat won't exactly visit the facility for fun. Instead, North Korean employees will be mowing the lawns and collecting golf balls for their affluent brothers and sisters from the south. The capitalist enemy can already enjoy an elegant beach hotel, several restaurants and shopping at the local branch of a South Korean supermarket chain.

At first the Kumgangsan tourists were only permitted to pay in US dollars. However, the bankrupt regime in Pyongyang now also accepts the South Korean won. And hard reality has forced Kim to gradually make the once impassible border along the 38th parallel ever more porous. Hyundai operates a second island of capitalism farther to the west, in the Kaesong special industrial zone, an hour's drive from the South Korean capital, Seoul. In Kaesong, 6,000 low-wage North Korean workers assemble basic products -- clothing, cooking pots and cosmetics containers -- for 16 South Korean companies.

Porous border

But the scene at the Goseon border crossing on the east coast illustrates just how much the government in Seoul is betting on reconciliation with the north. Goseon is the port of entry into the north for tourists headed to Kumgangsan. The new processing building, as big as an airport terminal, is clearly designed for growth. Five lanes are already set up for future car traffic between the north and the south, but only one is currently open -- to accommodate Hyundai's tour buses.

Although it takes all of 15 minutes for the South Koreans to reach their destination, the demilitarized zone through which the road passes -- with its mines, electric fences and barbed wire -- makes Kumgangsan seem worlds away. Like cautious vehicles navigating an exotic safari, the South Korean busses roll through this no-man's land on a road bordered by a new railway line. Grim-faced North Korean soldiers are stationed every few hundred meters along the railroad embankment to make sure that the busses don't stray from their prescribed route.

Kumgangsan offers the vacationers a chance to relax in a dreamlike landscape, but also to enjoy a forced respite from the high-tech Western world. When they enter the country, their bags are searched for mobile phones, the evil electronic tools the "Dear Leader" has strictly prohibited. Kim's border guards also relieve the tourists of cameras with powerful zoom lenses, devices for which they would probably have little use, since taking pictures from the busses is also forbidden.

Kumgangsan remains a test zone for North Korea. How far can the first successor to the throne in a Stalinist dynasty open up his country without losing control over what is essentially a giant prison? Kim is unlikely to care much that his paying guests are able to cast curious glances at the miseries of stone-age Communism as they pass through this small slice of North Korea. What they see stands in sharp contrast to life south of the border. Thin oxen pull carts across fields devoid of tractors and farm machinery. Few cars take to roads that Kim's subjects use mainly as footpaths. They are often shared only with the bicycles of the privileged. The windows of many houses are kept sealed against the cold with plastic sheeting, and at night the villages are plunged into darkness for lack of electricity.

The darkness makes the bright lights of Hyundai's vacation paradise -- kept burning by its own power supply -- seem all the more glaring. It's a beacon of South Korean capitalism in the gloomy north. Just over more a thousand carefully chosen North Korean workers have access to the area, which is sealed off like a military facility. But nowhere else in this isolated country, whose citizen inmates are neither permitted to travel freely from one city to the next nor receive foreign television stations, can Koreans of the north and south come into such fascinatingly close contact with one another.

One of the more interesting places where such encounters occur is the karaoke bar on the 12th floor of the Kumgang Hotel. Hwang Sang Yoon, an engineer for a Seoul company that manufactures measuring devices, is sitting with a group of coworkers, clapping enthusiastically to the beat of the music, as one of the young North Korean hostess takes to the microphone. On the back of her red outfit, she wears the obligatory pin displaying a likeness of "eternal" President Kim Il Sung.

As the young entertainer starts singing a politically correct love ballad from the land of the Kims, the excited South Koreans push their way forward and sing along. A lively little party forms, and soon North Koreans and South Koreans are introducing themselves and clinking glasses. But when a few guests begin snapping photos of the waitresses -- that too is strictly prohibited -- the horrified North Korean women step aside to avoid being photographed and the mood suddenly cools down.

Engineer Hwang, undeterred, continues to enjoy the rare rendezvous with the beauties from the north. "We are one Korea," he calls out, raising his glass. The women nod graciously. But Hwang later says that one would be hard-pressed to find South Koreans eager to see a hasty reunification with the bitterly poor north, partly out of concern for their own affluence. It's a sentiment the government of South Korean President Roh Moo Hyun shares. Although Seoul supports Hyundai's projects in the north, it does so mainly to help prevent a collapse of the Kim dynasty.

Development ahead of reunificiation

With a view toward future reunification, the south is developing its Gyeonggi border province and building factories there. Industrial use of the region along the border was practically forbidden for many years, leading to economic decline and depopulation -- a situation not unlike that which once occurred in the former West Germany's border regions with then East Germany. But nowadays new investment is celebrated as a signal of a relaxation of tensions, irrespective of whether the six-nation talks over North Korea's nuclear weapons program will continue or not.

But Seoul is also supporting its ailing neighbor with plenty of direct aid and cooperation. Last year alone, the south shipped 500,000 tons of rice and 350,000 tons of fertilizer to its poor cousin, while generals from the north and south met to avoid border incidents.

South Koreans are finding it more and more difficult to understand that the United States, the country's most important ally, continues to count Kim's realm as part of its so-called "Axis of Evil." The majority of the population no longer has any personal connection to the Korean War and many South Koreans see little reason to hate the still very unpredictable regime in the north these days. According to recent opinion polls, almost half of South Koreans between the ages of 17 and 23 say that their country should stand behind North Korea if the United States were to attack Pyongyang.

All of this encourages Hyundai to continue expanding its vacation enclaves. Kim Young Hyun, manager of the company's Kumgangsan facility, points enthusiastically at the steep cliffs behind the resort: "Our next project is to develop the inland mountains for vacationers." The company plans to attract ambitious hikers and climbers to the resort with a challenging series of mountain hiking trails.

Hyundai's efforts

The people at Hyundai have devoted their plans to the memory of company founder Chung Ju Yung. In 1998, the patriotic Chung, now deceased, crossed the border into North Korea with an aid shipment of 1,001 cows. In spectacular meetings with dictator Kim, Chung's visit then set the stage for joint projects now being realized.

The company also funneled secret payments to the north, money with which former South Korean President Kim Dae Jung essentially bought his way into a legendary June 2000 summit with Kim Jong Il in Pyongyang. When the deal came to light, the head of Hyundai Asan, Chung's son Mong Hun, jumped to his death from the company's Seoul headquarters in August 2003. His widow, Hyun Jeong Eun, has continued her husband's efforts to achieve reconciliation. But although she was given an audience with the "Dear Leader" last July, Hyun soon discovered just how unpredictable doing business with North Korea can be.

When Hyundai fired its key contact to the North Korean regime, a deputy CEO who was accused of embezzling $700,000, the tyrannical Kim took his revenge on the company by temporarily reducing Kumgangsan's daily tourist quota to 600 visitors. He also offered a South Korean competitor the opportunity to take over Hyundai's business, but the company declined. And so Hyundai continues its ventures north of the 38th parallel. According to executive Kim Young Hyun, the company has already turned its first profits with its vacation trips to the north. But, he adds, profits aren't nearly as important as contributing to peace on the divided peninsula.

Hyundai chairwoman Hyun Jeong Eun agrees. When she visited Kumgangsan last year, Hyun's purse was searched by North Korean border guards, who treated her as if she were nothing but an ordinary tourist. But despite this humiliation, Hyun later said, there was only one thing on her mind: "I will not give up."


진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

김정일...(조선중앙통신)

Kim Jong Il's Leadership, Key to Victory

    Pyongyang, January 16 (KCNA) -- The servicepersons and the people of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea are steadfastly advancing along one road of revolution, overcoming every manner of trials and hardships. The seasoned leadership of Kim Jong Il guarantees that the Korean revolution has emerged victorious without any slightest vacillation, going through the storm and stress of history.
    President Kim Il Sung, in his lifetime, said with conviction that Kim Jong Il was the symbol and the future of Juche Korea and the revolutionary cause of Juche would win victory after victory under his guidance.
    His great Songun idea lighting the way for realizing the independence of the popular masses, extraordinary commanding art making it possible to defeat any formidable enemy and the creative power turning impossibility to possibility and creating thing out of nothing are the source of victory for the Korean army and people.
    The last ten-odd year history of Songun revolution is brilliantly adorned with the tested leadership of Kim Jong Il, who has wrought world-startling miracles through thick and thin.
    He has developed in depth the Songun idea fathered by the President to be a mode of politics in our era, thus providing the army and people with the valuable sword of certain victory with which they can firmly defend the socialist fatherland from the imperialist enemies and push ahead with the revolution.
    It is thanks to his Songun idea and politics that the DPRK has successfully stood against the outrageous nuclear blackmail of the imperialists and turned into an impregnable fortress with strong self-defensive nuclear deterrent.
    With his outstanding leadership he met enemies' hard-line with super one and always drove them into the defensive, winning victory after victory. Under his leadership hundreds of thousands of hectares of arable land were rezoned to suit the features of the socialist country, totally eliminating the centuries-long feudal remnants. And monumental edifices including the Taean Friendship Glass Factory and Paekma-Cholsan Waterway have been built in different parts of the country.
    In particular, last year witnessed greater successes than those in the recent few years in the field of economic construction. This eloquently proves the fact that the realization of his intention of building a great prosperous powerful nation is not a matter of the distant future.
    The army and people of the DPRK, who have laid a solid foundation for the building of a great prosperous powerful nation and won only victory under the Songun revolutionary leadership of Kim Jong Il, took a big step toward greater victory this year.


진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

WANTED: 김정일

"EVIDENCE"!

A NEW GENERATION OF "BOAT PEOPLE"..


 

N. Korean leader in Guangzhou
Jan. 14, SEOUL, South Korea -- North Korean leader Kim Jong-il is photographed on a pleasure cruise in China's Guangzhou region on Jan. 13, by

Japanese broadcaster TBS... (Yonhap)

http://english.yna.co.kr/Engnews/20060114/630000000020060114123455E6.html

 

International Herald Tribune(1.14):

VIP in southern China? Rumor says it's Kim 

 

Washington Post(1.14):

Kim Apparently in China's South

....

 

On one side the entire story about Kim Jr., "the disappeared", is just funny, it's just a crazy joke. But on the other hand it shows a really serious situation...

First of all, as I know, there are no political "leaders" - actually "leaders" are always unnecessary, useless^^ - who were/are visiting the PRC in secret... except the "Sun of the 21st Century"(KCNA), a.k.a. Kim Jong-il.

So there must be reasons why he and his gang is acting like that.

1.) Perhaps they know that in fact no-one - except the poeple who are forced because of political duties, such as the talks about the nuclear issue - wants to invite them, or even to see them.

2.) Or they(Kim Jong-il...) know that there are(perhaps many) people who, if they would know that Kim Jr. and his gang is in their neighborhood, just would like to ... them. Simply they are just to afriad to be in the public.

3.) Or possibly, especially the "Sun of the 21th Century" is just... LUNATIC!!

 

But even just one of this reasons is applicable, this is at least abnormal!

 

But if "only" the reasons no. 1 and/or 2 are applicable, we should ask ourselves: WHY...?? Because lastly it is no fun, not at all!

진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

없어진: 김정일..^=^

Kim-spotters hunt elusive leader

 

Friday January 13, 2006

Guardian

 

Missing: one North Korean dictator. Recognisable by bouffant hair, Elvis glasses, worker's tunic and obsequious hangers-on.

 

 

Last seen in heavily guarded train crossing the border into China. May be shopping in Shanghai, receiving medical treatment in Guangzhou or trying to avert nuclear war in Beijing.

Such frenzied speculation surged in north-east Asia yesterday as Kim Jong-il, the leader of the world's most reclusive state, was reported to have made a rare trip outside his homeland.

If true, it would be only the sixth time since 2000 that the head of the workers' party has ventured out of North Korea. Because of assassination fears the previous visits, all of them by train, were shrouded in secrecy and not confirmed by any of the involved countries until Mr Kim was safely back in Pyongyang.

Security concerns are likely to have increased since his last trip in April 2004, which ended only hours before a huge explosion close to a section of the railway on which he had been travelling.

The latest flurry of rumours was prompted by a reported sighting of Mr Kim at the Chinese border station of Dandong at dawn on Tuesday morning. According to South Korean media, troops sealed off the area and rail officials took part in a 15-minute welcome ceremony.

The North Korean embassy in Beijing has cancelled all its usual activities. The Chinese foreign ministry refused to either confirm or deny that Mr Kim was in the country. Government spokesman Kong Quan acknowledged that a visit was planned, but said he was not yet authorised to reveal the timing.

US officials, however, appeared to be in little doubt. "I understand we have some North Korean visitors here today," said Christopher Hill, who is in Beijing as the top US negotiator at six-party talks aimed at denuclearising the peninsular.

This has been enough to prompt a spot-the-dictator competition among media organisations. South Korea's Yonhap news agency placed Mr Kim in Shanghai, saying he had flown there while using the train as a decoy. Reuters speculated he was heading to Beijing to meet senior Chinese leaders, or merely passing through en route to Moscow. Russia's Itar-Tass news agency, which is the only foreign news organisation to have a bureau in Pyongyang, said Mr Kim is still at home and the VIP on the train was a member of his family.

But yesterday most of the attention focused on Guangzhou, the capital of southern Guangdong province. The city's best hotel, the White Swan, has been requisitioned by the government for three days, metal detectors have been installed and traffic has been cordoned off.

Mr Kim's motives are as unclear as his whereabouts...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/korea/article/0,2763,1685507,00.html

 

...and "our beloved"(^^) Chosun Ilbo wrote this:

http://english.chosun.com/w21data/html/news/200601/200601130022.html

 

 

But anyway, it's better to believe nothing, because in reality...

Who knows???


진보블로그 공감 버튼트위터로 리트윗하기페이스북에 공유하기딜리셔스에 북마크

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