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N. Korean newspaper calls for implementation of inter-Korean deals

All Headlines 14:29 June 13, 2019

SEOUL, June 13 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's main newspaper on Thursday urged the South to carry out the agreements reached between their leaders, saying that calls are growing for practical measures to improve relations between the two Koreas.

The commentary from the Rodong Sinmun came one day after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un sent a condolence message and flowers for former first lady Lee Hee-ho's funeral via his sister, Kim Yo-jong, at the border truce village of Panmunjom.

Despite such interaction, North Korean media outlets continued to lash out at Seoul over slow progress in cross-border projects, hinting at there being little possibility of Pyongyang returning to talks amid months of deadlock in its negotiations with Washington.

"Whoever wants improvement in North-South relations, peace on the Korean Peninsula and co-prosperity of the ethnic group should have proper stance and attitude on North-South declarations and show a will to implement them by practical actions, not words," the commentary said.

"Since the North and South confirmed the principle of national autonomy, there is no need to read the face of others and it is all the more not necessary to get 'approval' from outside," it said.

In another article, the newspaper said North Korea has been boasting the power of an autonomous economy based on the spirit of self-reliance despite "unprecedented" sanctions.

After Lee died Monday, expectations had arisen that North Korea could send a delegation of officials to pay their respects over her death, which observers said could serve as a stimulus to move the stalled inter-Korean relations forward.

During her meeting with senior South Korean officials, the North Korean leader's sister expressed hope of continuing inter-Korean cooperation in honor of the efforts made by the late former first lady, according to Chung Eui-yong, head of South Korea's presidential National Security Office.

scaaet@yna.co.kr
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