N Korea demands own inspectors probe S Korean sinking

Last Updated: Saturday, May 22, 2010 - 16:14

Seoul: North Korea Saturday made fresh demands
that the South must receive Pyongyang investigators and show
them evidence that the North torpedoed a South Korean warship,
killing 46 sailors.

"There is no ground whatsoever for the south side to
refuse to receive the inspection group of the NDC (National
Defence Commission) if the results of the investigation are
objective and scientific as claimed by the south side," the
North`s Defence Minister Kim Yong-Chun said in a message sent
to the South.

"The south side should immediately receive the
inspection group... and produce material evidence without a
shred of doubt before it," he was quoted as saying by
Pyongyang`s official Korean Central News Agency.

A multinational investigation led by South Korea
concluded Thursday there was "overwhelming" evidence that a
North Korean torpedo split the 1,200-tonne corvette in two on
March 26 in the Yellow Sea.

In an unusually swift response, the North`s powerful
NDC, chaired by leader Kim Jong-Il, said Thursday the report
was based on "sheer fabrication".

But South Korean Defence Minister Kim Tae-Young on
Friday rejected the North`s demand as "outrageous", saying it
would be "like a robber or a murderer insisting he must
inspect the crime scene".

South Korea said yesterday the North should instead
attend military talks with the US-led United Nations Command
(UNC) after the command wraps up its investigation to review
the findings of the investigation and determine the
scope of armistice violation that occurred in the sinking.


First Published: Saturday, May 22, 2010 - 16:14

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