In the News – Rocket plan shows new N.K. regime’s ‘structural intransigence’: Lee advisor

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In the News – Rocket plan shows new N.K. regime’s ‘structural intransigence’: Lee advisor

SEOUL, April 4 (Yonhap) — North Korea’s determination to go ahead with a planned long-range rocket launch is indicative of the new regime’s “structural intransigence” under young leader Kim Jong-un and a “self-defeating” choice, a South Korean unification policy advisor said Wednesday.

Hyun In-taek, a unification policy advisor to President Lee Myung-bak who served as Seoul’s point man on North Korea for almost three years until last October, forecast a repeat of the North’s provocations in 2009, when it last launched a long-range rocket in April then conducted its second nuclear test a month later.

Despite international condemnation, North Korea has vowed to go ahead with the launch of a long-range rocket between April 12 and 16, ostensibly to put a satellite into space orbit. South Korea, the United States and other countries have condemned the proposed launch as a disguised test of the North’s improved ballistic missile technology. Continue reading

In the News – Presidential aide urges efforts to save N. Korean defectors in China

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In the News – Presidential aide urges efforts to save N. Korean defectors in China

SEOUL, March 6 (Yonhap) — A special aide to the South Korean president on Tuesday urged active efforts by the government to assist dozens of North Korean defectors in China who await deportation back to their communist homeland where they are likely to face harsh punishment.

Hyun In-taek, a special presidential aide for unification, also called for the early passage of a North Korean human rights act currently awaiting a vote by the country’s parliament.

“There need to be active measures (to save North Korean defectors) when these defectors may face severe punishment, including execution, should they be sent back to North Korea,” he said in a special lecture to the National Unification Advisory Council. Continue reading