Police accelerate antisecurity probe on Kim [2015/03/18 11:23]

Police have asked a group of experts to examine more than 20 publications that were seized from the leftist activist who attacked U.S. Ambassador Mark Lippert last Thursday, to see if they carry any “enemy-benefiting” contents in breach of the National Security Law.

Police officials said that after searching the residence and office of Kim Ki-jong last Friday, they confiscated nearly 220 items including dozens of books and periodicals that were published in North Korea or by entities viewed as supporting the communist state. “The examination of the books will be conducted by a group of experts, who have either a master`s or doctor`s degree (in North Korean affairs or related fields),” a police official told media, declining to be identified.

Investigators have been gathering evidence to level charges against Kim of violating the National Security Law, as North Korea praised the attack as an “act of justice.” Kim currently faces charges of attempted murder, assault on a foreign diplomat and obstruction of work at a morning seminar in Seoul where the attack occurred.

Kim denies any violation of the security law, arguing that he collected the publications as he needed them to write a thesis on the North for his master`s degree, and to study national reunification. He also claims that he has no ties to Pyongyang and never supported the North Korean political system.

Among the confiscated items were the “Film Art,” a book that late North Korean leader Kim Jong-il wrote in the 1970s based on the North`s juche (self-reliance) ideology; and a series of periodicals published by the Pan-Korean Coalition for National Unification, a group that the Supreme Court ruled in 1997 had illegally benefited the enemy, namely the North.

Kim is thought to have obtained the Film Art and other publications when he visited the North some seven times between 1999 and 2007. In 2007, Kim set up a memorial alter to mourn the death of former North Korean leader Kim Jong-il. Last week, investigation authorities mentioned that “enemy-benefitting” materials referred to those carrying contents that could “threaten the existence of the Republic of Korea and the country`s political system of liberal democracy.”

Investigators plan to wrap up their initial probe by Friday and hand the case over to the prosecution. North Korea`s Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the Fatherland, meanwhile, claimed the South`s attempt to link Kim with Pyongyang was aimed at shifting the blame on “patriotic forces working for Koreas` reunification.”

“This is aimed to annihilate the patriotic forces for reunification with a villainous attempt to hang more to a plot against (the North),” the statement said. Meanwhile, Lippert is doing well and may be released from hospital as early as Tuesday afternoon or Wednesday morning at the latest, the medical staff said.

U.S. Embassy officials said Lippert was grateful for the outpour of encouraging messages from the Korean public and that he was currently reading “The Two Koreas,” a renowned book authored by Don Oberdorfer while on bed rest. Throngs of Korean politicians visited Lippert`s bedside on Sunday, including ruling Saenuri Party chairman Rep. Kim Moo-sung and main opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy leader Rep. Moon Jae-in.
출처: 헤럴드미디어 영자신문 코리아헤럴드 (www.koreaherald.com)