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'Indonesia university will not open Kim Jong-un class': embassy official

All News 14:56 January 29, 2016

BANGKOK, Jan. 29 (Yonhap) - The South Korean Embassy in Jakarta said Friday that the University of Indonesia (UI) has no intention to accept North Korea's reported request for a class named after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to be opened.

An embassy official said the Indonesian university has never considered accepting Pyongyang's suggestion, although Pyongyang did ask for the class to be opened.

In a telephone interview with Yonhap News Agency, the official said an Indonesian media report on the Kim Jong-un class seemed to have been made as Indonesian university officials could not express their flat refusal in the presence of visiting North Koreans.

Earlier this week, the Indonesian news agency RMOL and the English-language newspaper Jakarta Post reported that representatives from the North Korean government and universities asked UI to open a class named after the Pyongyang leader.

The Jakarta Post reported on Monday that the North Korean government, including their universities, and UI have agreed to form a partnership.

"The partnership was made after their visits to UI," Nesti "Ines" Rahayu, an employee in UI's International Office, was quoted by the Jakarta Post as having said.

"The demand for a special Kim Jong-un class is part of the agreement between the country's university and UI to carry out exchanges of students, staff and lecturers," she went on.

Ines stated that currently UI is reviewing the agreement, including the request for a Kim Jong-un class.

"We will examine all of their requests," Ines said, further emphasizing that UI hopes to develop a partnership that satisfies both parties.

According to the Korean Embassy official, Indonesia has maintained a relatively good relationship with North Korea, but it also speaks out toward Pyongyang, like when it criticized North Korea's recent fourth nuclear test.

He said that Indonesia does not want to become an object of ridicule, which it fears it would become if UI were to open the Kim Jong-un class at a time when the international community is criticizing the North's provocative attitude.

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