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Cablegate: Seoul - Media Reaction

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R 080731Z SEP 09
FM AMEMBASSY SEOUL
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RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RHHMUNA/USCINCPAC HONOLULU HI
RUEHGH/AMCONSUL SHANGHAI 1236
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RUEHIN/AIT TAIPEI 3956
RUEHGP/AMEMBASSY SINGAPORE 7172
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1484
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 2800
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 1878
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 2486

UNCLAS SEOUL 001434


SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV MARR ECON KPAO KMDR KS US
SUBJECT: SEOUL - MEDIA REACTION

NORTH KOREA

"WE SHOULD NOT GIVE IN TO NORTH KOREA'S NUCLEAR THREAT"

Conservative Dong-a Ilbo editorialized (09/05): "The international
community, including the UN, must consistently maintain its position
that it will strengthen sanctions in response to North Korea's
threat. Cooperation between the ROK and the U.S. should be, of
course, watertight... The two nations should remind the North that
the only solution (to the current standoff) is for the North to
return to the Six-Party Talks and take a path toward
denuclearization. They also need to clearly warn Pyongyang that
additional provocations will only ratchet up sanctions against the
North. China should now take specific actions so that the North
will change its attitude."


"HOW SHOULD WE DEAL WITH NORTH KOREA, WHICH HAS NO INTENTION OF
ABANDONING ITS NUCLEAR AMBITIONS?"

Conservative Chosun Ilbo editorialized (09/05): "It is more
realistic to think that the North Korean nuclear issue does not
depend on the outcome of the Six-Party Talks or U.S.-North Korea
dialogue but on (the survival of) the North Korean regime. To date,
the international community has tried to ignore a pessimistic view
that Pyongyang will never give up its nuclear ambitions as long as
it survives. However, a moment of truth will arrive some day, and
then, everyone will have to face up to the reality... While managing
the situation regarding the North with pressure and dialogue, we
should prepare for the moment that will determine the fate of the
Korean Peninsula."


"NORTH'S RIDICULOUS POSTURING"

Right-of-center JoongAng Ilbo editorialized (09/05): "We should not
repeatedly give in to North Korea's threats and start negotiating
with the nation... We should demonstrate that we will respond
sternly to North Korea's provocations whenever they come. We need
to demand evidence that the North is genuine about denuclearization.
We should adhere to the current position that only when the North
shows sincerity will negotiations be possible."


"NORTH KOREA'S LETTER: REQUEST FOR NEGOTIATIONS"

Left-leaning Hankyoreh Shinmun editorialized (09/05): "What is
critical now is the creation of an effective negotiation framework
in order to completely resolve the nuclear issue while controlling
the factors (that might lead to) conflict. The U.S. and China
talks have demonstrated these efforts, and the visit of U.S. Special
Representative for North Korea Policy Stephen Bosworth to Seoul on
Saturday can be seen as related (to these efforts to create a
negotiation framework.) The problem facing us now is speed and
depth. Matters could proceed on a positive note once dialogue
begins, however, further delay could have a negative effect. Every
participating country should work with this in mind and stop waiting
around for a better environment to emerge. The ROKG should be
making an effort to speed up dialogue as a matter of the highest
priority."


TOKOLA

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