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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

WEEKLY NK NEWS (2000.7.17 - 2000.7.23)

North Korea's National Defense Commission Chairman Kim Jong-il welcomed visiting Russian president Vladimir Putin personally at the airport, accompanied by Kim Young-nam, Cho Myung-rok, Kim Il-chul, Chun Byung-ho, Choi Taebok, and other party and government notables. Chairman Kim was also present at the airport to bid farewell the following day.

A Worker's Daily editorial placed great significance to the first-ever visit by a Russian head of state, touting it as `an event of great importance that will facilitate new relations between North Korea and Russia'. The visit was concluded with the signing of a joint declaration consisting of eleven articles between the two countries.

North Korea's Central Broadcasting reported a meeting between North Korea's foreign minister and the US secretary of state on June 26th to discuss bilateral issues, ahead of the Asian Regional Forum session on the 27th.

North Korea's propaganda organ, The National Democratic Front, kept up its usual diatribe concerning inter-Korean issues, blasting the USFK decision to postpone the announced apology visit as an `attempt to justify their illegal release of formaldehyde into the Han River', and urged that `the entire nation must arise in a struggle for abolishment of the National Security Law and the withdrawal of the USFK', which the organization blamed as the `chief cause of misunderstanding and mistrust between the two Koreas'.

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