Inter-Korean joint declaration welcomed

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- An international signature campaign for supporting the June 15 North-South Joint Declaration and demanding the immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces from South Korea was conducted in different countries. On May 14, the national chairman of the People's Democratic Party of Nigeria made public a signature paper and signed it on behalf of 13 million party members.
    The paper was also inked by the national leader of the youth organization under the party on April 18.
    Meanwhile, the organizational secretary of the Communist Party of Venezuela signed the signature paper on May 13 in the name of all the party members.

Workers' strike in S. Korea

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) - The (South) Korean Confederation of Trade Unions called a press conference on Tuesday, at which it declared that over 70,000 unionists under it would go on successive strikes at 270 odd work-sites from May 22, according to Seoul-based radio no.1. The organization charged that the "government" and the management are still taking insincere attitude toward the negotiations over the urgent demands of workers.

S. Korean authorities criticized for aborting contact in Mt. Kumgang

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- South Korean people are these days censuring the "ministry of unification" for aborting the working-level contact in Mt. Kumgang for the June 15 grand festival for national reunification and the august 15 joint events of the nation, according to news reports. The "National Alliance for Democracy and Reunification" released a statement on May 18 dismissing the "ministry's" deliberate abortion of the contact as an anti-reunification act of blatantly denying the spirit of the June 15 joint declaration.
    If the grand festival fails to be held smoothly, the "ministry" should be to entirely blame for it, the statement held.
    The south headquarters of the National Alliance of Youth and Students for the Country's Reunification issued a statement on May 16, denouncing such obstructive moves.
    The authorities refused to allow the delegates of the south side to participate in the contact for the mere reason that invitations for them from the north were sent through the joint secretariat of Pomminryon (National Alliance For The Country's Reunification), the statement said, adding: this behavior is no more than a systematic move to exclude Pomminryon and the South Korean Federation of University Student Councils.

Efforts for June 15 pro-reunification festival called for in S. Korea

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- A rally of Pomminryon (National Alliance for the Country's Reunification) for the withdrawal of the "enemy-benefiting" label attached to Pomminryon and Hanchongryon (South Korean Federation of University Student Councils) and the successful holding of the June 15 grand festival for national reunification was reportedly held in Kwangju, South Korea, on May 19 on the occasion of the 22nd anniversary of the Kwangju Popular Uprising. Attending the rally sponsored by the south headquarters of Pomminryon were over 1,000 workers, students and others.
    Addressing the rally, the chairman of the south headquarters of Pomminryon called for inheriting the May spirit of Kwangju and opening the door of national reunification through a nationwide struggle for independence against the united states to implement the June 15 South-North Joint Declaration.
    The permanent representative of the reunification solidarity said it is due to lack of independence that the people are undergoing all sorts of misfortune and pain in this land where flunkeyist traitors are ruling the roost. And he called for turning out in the vigorous reunification movement for vital rights of the people and national independence.
    The chairman of the Pusan youth society for nation and democracy said that all the young people should turn out in the struggle to smash the moves of the separatist forces at home and abroad and make the June 15 joint events of the nation a success without fail.

368,000 km-long train journey

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- A train used by President Kim Il Sung in his lifetime is preserved at the Kumsusan Memorial Palace, the sacred temple of Juche. By the train he gave on-site guidance to every part of the country and visited foreign countries.
    It was in the train that he used to meet officials to discuss state affairs and gave them important instructions and shared simple meals with them during his on-site guidance.
    And he visited socialist countries in East Europe including the former Soviet Union on his train journey of 24,000 km from mid-may to early July Juche 73 (1984).
    In the train he met senior party and state officials and progressive figures of foreign countries to indicate the way of the world revolution and the human cause of independence and had impressive meetings with related persons.
    Whenever officials earnestly asked him to have a good night at a lodging during his journey, he used to say that the train is his home and office room.
    He had a total of 368,000 km-long train journey for on-the-spot guidance and foreign visit from September Juche 34 (1945) to early July Juche 83 (1994).

Animals in River Taedong

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- A comprehensive research into the basin of the River Taedong in the DPRK resulted in completing specimens of 22 species of pond-snails, 11 species of crabs, 8 species of shrimps, a species of crayfish and a species of terrapin and publishing an album "animals in the River Taedong". The album explains in detail their shapes, distribution, ecology, etc.
    Among them are two species of pond-snails as small as millet that have never been found in Korea and a species of pond-snail, the first to be collected in the country.
    Leader Kim Jong Il sent the specimens and the album to Kim Il Sung University and the hygienic research institute of the academy of medical science to help them in education and scientific research.

Anecdotes about Kim Jong Il

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- Leader Kim Jong Il visited the site of the reconstruction and expansion project of the revolutionary martyrs' cemetery in a summer day in Juche 74 (1985) when it was close to completion. Looking round the cemetery, he came to a stop as he saw medals of hero engraved only on the busts of those who were awarded the title of hero before dying after the liberation of Korea from Japanese imperialist colonial rule.
    He told officials that all the anti-Japanese revolutionary martyrs might have been awarded the title of hero if there had been such a decoration system in the period of the anti-Japanese revolutionary struggle, adding that all of them entombed there were heroes and heroines.
    And he instructed that a big hero medal should be engraved on the wreath-laying stand instead of depicting it only on the busts of some martyrs so that all the anti-Japanese revolutionary martyrs were glorified with gold medals. A big medal of hero of the DPRK framed with magnolias was thus engraved on the stand.
    It happened in one day of April Juche 64 (1975), one day before the birthday of President Kim Il Sung.
    Kim Jong Il acquainted himself with the holiday preparations being made by the young people building the historic revolutionary site on Mt. Wangjae.
    He has already sent a lot of meat, canned goods, confectionery, fruits, etc. to them. yet, he was lost in a deep thought that this was not enough for them.
    He called an official and instructed him to send the first harvest of cucumbers from a greenhouse to the builders working hard in the site. He told him to airlift the cucumbers so that they might reach there before their breakfast on April 15.
    Sitting at the sumptuous breakfast table next morning, they were deeply moved to hear a touching story about the fresh cucumbers before them.

Chongryon on preserving national character

    Tokyo, May 21 (KNS-KCNA) -- The 2nd session of the 19th central committee of the General Association of Korean Residents in Japan (Chongryon) was held on May 21. So Man Sul, chairman of the central standing committee of Chongryon, made a report on the agenda item "on preserving the national character and make a new turnaround and progress in the work of education and culture and the service activities for the living of compatriots."
    He said in the report that the rightist reactionaries of Japan set Chongryon as the target of a policy of stamping out the national character and community of compatriots, going against the development of history and times and has resorted to the unprecedented suppression of it.
    The Japanese reactionaries are now intensifying their moves against the DPRK and Chongryon more than ever before in a sinister attempt to destroy Chongryon to deprive compatriots of the national character and cut off the generation of the nation, he said, and went on:
    Chongryon has set forward the work of education and culture and the service activities for the living of compatriots as the two major tasks of patriotic work which are essential to the movement of Koreans in Japan and the mission of Chongryon. The issue of preserving the national character is the starting point and a conclusion of Chongryon activities.
    He called for allowing no moves to encroach upon the national dignity and rights of Koreans in Japan and called upon Chongryon organizations of all levels to rise up to discharge the duty of a national organization, an organization of service to the living of compatriots.
    A decision on the discussed item was adopted after speeches of representatives were made at the session.
    A letter to leader Kim Jong Il was adopted at the session.

Anniversary of Kim Jong Il's work observed

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- Rodong Sinmun today dedicates a signed article to the 10th anniversary of leader Kim Jong Il's famous work "let us bring about a fresh turn in literature and arts on the basis of successes made in the creation of multi-part feature film 'the nation and destiny'". The work was published on May 23, Juche 81 (1992). In the work he, on the basis of a profound philosophical clarification of the issue of the destiny of the nation, gave solutions to all the issues in building the Juche-oriented literature and arts at the present time.
    Over the last decade the Juche-oriented literature and arts have more strikingly demonstrated their might as the literature and arts strictly based on the revolutionary outlook on the leader, the article says, and continues:
    The army-based revolutionary literature and arts created under Kim Jong Il's army-based leadership are characterized by the fact that the spirit of devotedly defending the leader and devotedly carrying out his instructions are reflected in all literary and art works and new characters representing the revolutionary spirit of soldiers created.
    It is a great event of significance in the human history of literature and arts that a new style of mass gymnastic and artistic performance was created in building literature and arts based on the army-based revolution.
    The performance "Arirang" is praised as the acme of human literature and arts representing and symbolizing the 21st century for its highest level of depiction and artistry.

DPRK foreign minister's visit to Russia

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- Foreign minister of the DPRK Paek Nam Sun and his party came back home today after winding up their visit to the Russian Federation. The Russian foreign minister gave a reception in honor of the DPRK foreign minister and his party on May 21.
    Foreign minister Igor Ivanov said in his speech that the meetings of the two top leaders in July 2000 and August 2001 were the new and great events in speeding up the development of the Russia-DPRK relations.
    The talks between the foreign ministers of the two countries showed the unanimous will of the two sides to further develop relations in all domains, he said, and went on:
    The June 15 North-South Joint Declaration enjoys full support and understanding from Russia and it is an important declaration not only for peace and security on the Korean Peninsula but also for the security of Russia. Russia has attached special significance to the stability of the Korean Peninsula.
    Paek Nam Sun said in his speech that at the meetings and talks, the two sides exchanged views on thoroughly implementing what was agreed in the DPRK-Russia state treaties and the joint declarations and on matters of common concern and reached a consensus of views on many issues.
    Expanding and developing the DPRK-Russia relations based on the close friendship between the top leaders fully conforms with the fundamental interests and the strategic interests of the two peoples and greatly contributes to the peace and security in the Asia-Pacific region and the rest of the world, he said.
    He emphasized that the DPRK would positively cooperate with the Russian Federation for all-round and viable development of the DPRK-Russia relations in the future.
    On the same day the talks between the foreign ministers of the DPRK and Russia were held in Moscow and a plan of exchange between the two foreign ministries was signed.

Military provocations of S. Korean army

    Pyongyang, May 23 (KCNA) -- The South Korean army on May 22 committed such provocations as introducing a tank into an area near the military demarcation line under the eyes of the north side, according to military sources. They introduced the tank into an area near MDL marker no.1105 in the eastern sector of the front under cover of thick fog and cloudy weather.
    On the 23rd they deployed the tank on a hill favorable to watching the north side and got on the nerves of soldiers of the Korean People's Army on their routine guard duty.
    This is an undisguised challenge to the north and a downright perfidy to the June 15 North-South Joint Declaration.
    The South Korean authorities must sternly punish those responsible for the introduction of the heavy weapon and take a responsible step lest such case should reoccur.