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N. Korea to maintain simultaneous development of economy, nukes: books

All Headlines 09:59 March 13, 2016

SEOUL, March 13 (Yonhap) -- North Korea is intent on sticking with its policy of simultaneously developing its economy and nuclear weapons, a series of promotional books showed Sunday.

Yonhap News Agency obtained the 10-volume series on North Korean government policies, history and military, among other issues, through Cheong Seong-chang, senior researcher at Seoul's Sejong Institute. The series was published last July.

Each volume is 100 pages long and in a question-and-answer format.

The volume on the North Korean military states that the country's "byeongjin" policy, adopted in 2013 to seek concurrent development of economy and nuclear arms, will never be altered.

"The byeongjin policy is a strategic line designed to bolster the country's defensive capabilities with nuclear power and to help build a strong, prosperous socialist state, through economic construction," the book states. "It's not a temporary countermeasure against fast-changing situations. We must stay on this strategic line permanently."

The book also paid tribute to the North's late founder, Kim Il-sung, for his policy of pushing for economic construction and national defense, and to Kim's son, late Kim Jong-il, for his "songun," or military-first policy. It said the byeongjin line is an extension of these two earlier policies.

Cheong noted that the publication of these volumes indicates that the regime under young leader Kim Jong-un, son of Kim Jong-il, has achieved at least some degree of stability with a clear policy direction.

"The books show that North Korea, despite facing international sanctions, is unlikely to abandon its nuclear weapons," Cheong added.

The series also discusses changes in North Korea since Kim Jong-un assumed power in 2011, including a rise in exports of clothing and marine products to China.

The series claims that South Korea started the 1950-1953 Korean War and that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was the mastermind behind the military coup on May 16, 1961.

It criticized the U.S. economic sanctions on North Korea as "a crime against humanity " that hinders a sovereign state's right to develop and interferes with the people's enjoyment of human rights.

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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