Obama supports S Korean gov't on probe into ship sinking

10:42, May 18, 2010      

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File photo shows a South Korean Navy rescue vessel Gwangyang (back) and a naval patrol ship search for possible survivors and bodies from the sunken naval ship Cheonan, in the waters off Baengnyeongdo, an island near the border with DPRK March 29, 2010. (Xinhua/Reuters File Photo)

The U.S. President Barack Obama voiced his support Tuesday for ongoing multinational investigations into the mysterious sinking of South Korea's warship near a tense western border with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), the presidential office in Seoul, Cheong Wa Dae, said.

During the 25-minute phone conversation, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak discussed progress in probe into the incident and thanked his counterpart for sending experts to help rescue and salvage operations, Cheong Wa Dae said in a statement.

Obama expressed his condolences over the tragic incident where 46 South Korean navy sailors were killed, and stressed that Washington, Seoul's ally, trusts and supports the investigations by a multinational team of civilian and military experts, according to Cheong Wa Dae.

The two leaders also agreed to bolster their efforts to persuade the DPRK into ending its nuclear weapons programs and stopping its hostile acts, but stopped short of blaming Pyongyang for being responsible for the deadly sinking.

Obama said he will send Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Seoul next week to discuss the incident next, Cheong Wa Dae said.

Source: Xinhua


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