North Korea moves towards peace but ignores human rights: Cardinal
The emeritus Archbishop of Seoul is not optimistic about an improvement in North Korean human rights situation following this week's visit by Madeleine Albright.
Asked about possible improvements in human and religious rights in North Korea, Cardinal Stephen Kim told Fides: "I see no chance of immediate improvement. Perhaps in the future, but only gradually. North Korea is changing, but only externally. No changes are seen internally. Power is still in the hands of the only Party. From this point of view nothing has changed at all".
NGOs in Korea fear that Madeleine Albright's visit and a possible trip to Korea by President Clinton on November 11, may increase American influence in the Korean peninsula, and they are already talking of "new, fierce US imperialism".
Cardinal Kim says : "I think that if North Korea establishes good relations with the United States and Japan, South Korea stands to benefit. Of course the United States pursue their own interests in the peninsula, but it is also true that they can only make suggestions to Pyongyang and Seoul, they cannot make decisions: it is up to the governments of North and South to take the steps necessary to improve cooperation between the two".