April 19, 2010 12:30
Former Defense Minister and Grand National Party lawmaker Kim Jang-soo says Seoul should consider military action if North Korea is found to have been responsible for the sinking of the Navy corvette Cheonan.
"If North Korea is found to be responsible, we could consider military options, including a blockade, armed protest or a direct blow," Kim told the Chosun Ilbo on Saturday. "North Korea committed many acts of terror," including the Rangoon bombing in during the South Korean presidential visit in 1983, and the bombing of a KAL passenger jet in 1987, Kim said. "But we did not follow up with direct responses, instilling in North Korea the belief that South Korea will do nothing."
"We will be able to protect peace only if we are ready to respond firmly," Kim said. He added non-military options are also possible in sending the North a stern warning and punishment, including political steps and economic sanctions, as well as seeking the help of the UN and other allies. "In that case, China's cooperation would be key," Kim said. But he cautioned it will take a long time before any North Korean link can be proven in the sinking of the Cheonan.
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