South Korean President, Lee Myung-bak, stated that reunification with North Korea would 'definitely' take place. His statement also comes close to Wikileaks revelations that suggested that North's biggest ally China is reportedly backing a plan for reunification. A leaked diplomatic cable sent out to Washington by US diplomats maintained that South Korean officials would press for reunification but precisely, under their control.
Lee, who is on a two-day state visit to Malaysia, said, Reunification will definitely come. He also proposed discussion over a reunification tax expected to fetch $1 trillion dollars.
It is obvious that North Korea now remains one of the most belligerent nations in the world. Also unequivocal is the fact that the two Koreas will have to co-exist peacefully and, in the end, realize reunification, Lee told Malaysian newspaper, The Star.
Stating that the size of the South Korean economy has grown to 38 times larger than that of North Korea since the end of Korean War, Lee maintained that open market strategy could help the impoverished North. The President also stated that South Korea is responsible to ensure basic right of North's 23 million population.
To accomplish this (reunification), the two Koreas need to pursue economic collaboration while respecting each other, he added.
Lee's comments came after two South Korean soldiers and two civilians were killed after North Korea fired artillery shells at South Korea's Yeonpyaong Island in the Yellow Sea last month. The island located near the West Sea inter-Korean border has often been a place of military hostility between both the nations. Pyongyang and Seoul have blamed each other for setting off the artillery attacks.
US diplomatic cables leaked by whistle-blower site Wikileaks revealed senior communist leaders from China told South Korean and US diplomats that China would back reunification. The anonymous sources maintained that China would not be able to stop North Korea's collapse following the death of its leader Kim Jong-il.
DPRK now had little value to China as a buffer state, the cable reads.
Meanwhile, the communist North released its own report on Yeonpyaong Island shelling incident. Stating that the Yonphyong archipelago was not far from the site where South Korean patrol ship Cheonan sank earlier this year, it alleged that Seoul was 'crying out for seeking revenge'.
The inter-Korean dialogues and visits which had been brisk since the adoption of the June 15 joint declaration were totally suspended and an atmosphere of reconciliation, unity and reunification rapidly got cool due to the puppet group, it said.
North Korean officials also blamed the U.S., claiming that Washington sidestepped 'DPRK's fair and aboveboard proposal' for fixing a military boundary line in the West Sea.