S Korean activists, lawmakers mark anniversary of landmark Seoul-Pyongyang declaration

14:10, June 15, 2011      

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South Korea's progressive civic group members and opposition lawmakers commemorated Wednesday the 11th anniversary of the landmark joint declaration with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK).

Scores of activists held a rally at the Imjingak pavilion near the demilitarized zone dividing the Korean peninsula, urging the conservative South Korean government to implement the historic June 15th declaration aimed at laying the foundation for ultimate reunification.

Key liberal and left-leaning opposition party lawmakers, including Sohn Hak-kyu, chairman of the main opposition Democratic Party, attended the event to call on the two Koreas to stop confrontation.

The activists had asked for government permission to visit the northern border city of Kaesong for a joint event with their DPRK counterparts marking the anniversary, but the South Korean government turned down the request, citing a set of measures restricting cross-border exchanges.

Such punitive measures were put in place in May 2010 after the fatal sinking of a South Korean warship, which Seoul blamed on Pyongyang despite repeated denials.

Inter-Korean ties have continued their downward spiral after an exchange of fire near a western sea border later that year, and further soured in recent week with Pyongyang announcement it will no longer deal with Seoul.

The 2000 declaration, adopted between then-South Korean President Kim Dae-jung and top DPRK leader Kim Jong-il, promoted inter-Korean economic cooperation and exchanges in other fields.

It was followed by another watershed declaration in 2007 between ex-South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun and his northern counterpart, which led to an eight-point agreement aimed at easing tension and achieving peace and reunification.

Source:Xinhua
 
 
     
 
 
 
     
 
 
 
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(Editor:陈乐乐)

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