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Wednesday, September 2, 1998 Published at 22:11 GMT 23:11 UK


North Korea's anger at missile test reaction

Search for debris from the missile is continuing

A spokesman for North Korean on Wednesday dismissed Japan's reaction to its reported ballistic missile test, accusing Tokyo of "making a fuss" over what was a matter of North Korea's sovereignty. The following is the text of the statement by the spokesman for the Korean Asia-Pacific Peace Committee, carried by the North Korean news agency, KCNA.

High-ranking officials and other politicians of Japan are making provocative remarks against the DPRK [North Korea] over a missile launching test that they say was carried out by the DPRK.

They describe the test as something "regrettable" and "dangerous" and claim that the test made it difficult to improve relations with the DPRK.

It is imprudent for Japan to say this or that, unaware of what the DPRK did, a missile test or anything else.

Japan's behaviour is ridiculous, indeed, in view of the fact that Japan is zealously developing long-distance vehicles and other up-to-date weapons and paving the way for overseas aggression, having worked out "guidelines for Japan-US defence co-operation".

Many countries around Japan possess or have deployed missiles.

'hurling mud'

Japanese politicians, however, hurl mud only at the DPRK while being unaware of the background.

They emanate from the long-standing hostile policy towards the DPRK.

Japan has so far thrown a wet blanket over the magnanimous attitude of the Korean Workers' Party and the DPRK government for development of good relations between the two countries, by answering it with an anti-DPRK campaign.

Japan must necessarily pay for the 40 odd years of its occupation of Korea and murder of Koreans and plunder.

We bitterly denounce Japan for making a fuss over the matter that belongs to our sovereignty while being unaware of its background.

We warn Japan to face up to reality, act with discretion and renounce its anachronistic hostile policy towards the DPRK at once.

Later, the Japanese Government denounced the North Korean statement.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiromu Nonaka, quoted by the Japanese news agency, Kyodo, said: "We cannot tolerate remarks by a country which has fired a missile into the sky above another country without prior notice, in total disregard for international rules.

"Sovereignty is not something you claim by aiming (a missile) at another country."

BBC Monitoring (http://www.monitor.bbc.co.uk), based in Caversham in southern England, selects and translates information from radio, television, press, news agencies and the Internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages.



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