Seventy-two years have passed since the Korean nation was liberated on August 15, 1945 from the cruel military occupation of the Japanese imperialists and divided into north and south by the US imperialists at the same time.

As they have suffered the pain of national division since the short-lived delight of liberation, the Koreans understand that they should open up a broad avenue to independent reunification through a concerted effort of the whole nation.

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) is consistent in its stand to safeguard the security of the compatriots and peace of the country without fighting with the fellow countrymen.

Proceeding from the standpoint of loving the country and nation to improve inter-Korean relations through a concerted

effort of the whole nation and open up a broad avenue to independent reunification, the DPRK urged, whenever an opportunity presented itself, that the south Korean authorities should not indulge in treason toeing the line of foreign forces but respect their fellow countrymen in the north as partners in national reunification.

And the DPRK has made every possible effort for one Korea.

In this course, the July 4 Joint Statement was proclaimed, giving a hope and optimism for national reunification to all Koreans. At that time the south Korean authorities promised positively that they would reject foreign intervention in the internal affairs of the nation and not be stooges of the US or Japan. They pledged to regard the three principles for national reunification as the mainstay of reunification. If they had kept the promise, the inter- Korean relations would have advanced a long way along the road of reconciliation, unity, peace and prosperity, and a new era of national independence would have opened up on this land to solve the reunification problem with the nation’s own effort.

The south Korean authorities, however, degraded to servile agents and slaves of the US and Japan, flung away the principles of national independence, and have zealously catered to the foreign forces in their aggressive hostile policy towards the DPRK.

In particular, Park Geun Hye, who was sentenced to impeachment by the south Korean people in March last, had turned inter- Korean relations into a plaything in the American hand for control of the DPRK, while going against the will of the fellow countrymen who aspire to independent reunification and pursuing a sycophantic policy towards big powers and a treacherous stand towards the Korean nation during her office.

Peddling the hostile policy towards the DPRK camouflaged as the “confidence-building process” and “Dresden announcement,” she was obsequious to the foreign forces buzzing around the United States and other countries to beg

for strangulation of the fellow countrymen in the north.

This deplorable reality gives the Korean nation a historic lesson that as long as there are traitors inciting antagonism and confrontation while targeting the fellow countrymen as “enemy,” it is impossible to achieve national reconciliation and unity.

National unity precisely means the country’s reunification, and only when the whole Korean nation is united into one, will it be possible to realize national reunification.

For the purpose, a meeting of chairmen of the north, south and overseas sides of All- Korean Committee for Implementation of June 15 Joint Declaration was held last February. The meeting discussed practical matters for improving the north-south relations and opening up a new phase of independent reunification by the concerted efforts of all Koreans this year that marks the 45th anniversary of the historic July 4 Joint Statement and the 10th anniversary of the October 4 Declaration.

In May last, a ceremony for inaugurating the preparatory committee of workers’ organizations in the north and the south for a pan-national conference for peace and reunification of Korea and development of inter-Korean relations took place in the north and the south of Korea respectively.

The ceremony adopted an inaugural declaration, which announced that the conference would become a significant occasion in implementing the northsouth agreements to improve the north-south relations and open a new heyday of peace and independent reunification of the country.

It also underscored the need to orient all exchanges and solidarity activities to be conducted between the workers’ organizations in the north and the south this year to holding the conference.

The formation of the preparatory committee of the workers’ organizations gave a momentum to activities of all strata at home and abroad to hold a grand pannational meeting for reunification in this significant year.

No harsh trials and challenges can check the march of the Korean people who are advancing for national reunification with full confidence and a patriotic standpoint for peace and reunification.