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N.K. official newspaper urges S. Korea to follow its own lead in inter-Korean ties

North Korea 08:53 July 16, 2019

SEOUL, July 16 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's official newspaper denounced South Korea on Tuesday for its heavy dependence on the United States in determining cross-border affairs, saying the outlook for inter-Korean ties will not be bright if Seoul sticks to the attitude.

North Korean media has repeatedly called for more active cross-border projects independent of the U.S. intervention, demanding Seoul put inter-Korean relations ahead of anything else.

"Following the lead of outside forces runs counter to the trend of improving relations between the North and the South, and easing tensions on the Korean Peninsula," the Rodong Sinmun, the organ of the North's ruling party, said in an article.

"If (South Korea) does not change its stance of minding outside forces on any issues, it will not be able to avoid isolation and exclusion forever with no expectations for bright days for the North-South relations," the paper added.

South Korea is hoping that active cross-border cooperation could deepen their relations and create a virtuous circle in helping bolster the outlook for Washington-Pyongyang denuclearization negotiations.

Major economic cooperation with the North, such as the reopening of a suspended joint industrial park in the North's border town of Kaesong, however, has been blocked due to sanctions that Washington wants to keep in place until the North's complete denuclearization.

North Korea has accused South Korea of being dictated by Washington on its inter-Korean policy and urged it to voice its own opinions in advancing relations between the two Koreas.

On Monday, Meari, a North Korean propaganda outlet, demanded South Korea ditch what it called pro-American "toadyism," urging Seoul to prioritize the Korean people and seek inter-Korean policy independently of outside intervention.

kokobj@yna.co.kr
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