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NORTH KOREA NEWSLETTER NO. 121 (August 26, 2010)

SEOUL (Yonhap) -- The following is a chronological review of major developments related to North Korea from August 19-25, 2010.

19 The (North) Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reports that the North's Navy intercepted a South Korean fishing boat and says the crew admitted to intruding the economic waters of the DPRK (North Korea).

   19 Foreign Minister Pak Ui-chun meets with new German Ambassador to the DPRK Gerhard Thiedemann who paid a courtesy call on him at the Mansudae Assembly Hall in Pyongyang.

   19 A meeting is held at the Taedong River Diplomatic Corps Club in Pyongyang to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the opening of diplomatic ties between the DPRK and Cuba.

   19 Kim Yong-nam, president of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly, holds talks with Somsavath Lengsavath, standing vice premier of Laos, and his party at the Mansudae Assembly Hall.

   19 Kim Yong-nam meets with South Korea's pro-unification Rev. Han Sang-ryol at the Mansudae Assembly Hall. Han entered the North by air on June 12 and has since made speeches denouncing South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and praising the communist regime.

   20 Kim Yong-nam sends a message of greetings to Schmitt Pal, president of Hungary, on the occasion of its national day.

   20 Rev. Han Sang-ryol crosses the Military Demarcation Line at Panmunjom into South Korea and is detained by authorities. Before Han returned, North Korean officials involved in inter-Korean affairs held a farewell event for him.

   21 The KCNA reports that Sinuiju City and its vicinity have been severely affected by flooding. Houses, public buildings and arable land in Sangdan, Hadan and other rural communities around the city are reported to be submerged, as the Amnok (Yalu) River has overflowed.

   21 A government science and technology delegation led by Ri Ja-bang, chairman of the State Science and Technology Commission, departs for China.

   21 The Air Force and Navy are mobilized to the area of Sinuiju for rescue operations following severe floods.

   22 The KCNA reports that North Korean leader Kim Jong-il attended a grand music and dance performance, "Long March for Victory of Songun," put on by artists of the State Merited Chorus, the (North) Korean People's Army (KPA) Song and the Dance Ensemble, the KPA Military Band, the song and dance ensembles of the Commands of the KPA Navy and Air Force, and other art organizations of the KPA.

   22 The General Federation of Trade Unions of (North) Korea, Democratic Women's Union of (North) Korea and other workers' unions mark the 50th anniversary of the start of Kim Jong-il's "Songun revolutionary leadership."

   23 The documentary film "Providing a Great Turn with the Songun Revolutionary Leadership" was screened at the People's Palace of Culture in Pyongyang on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of leader Kim Jong-il's start of the Songun revolutionary leadership.

   23 Kim Jong-il sends a wreath to the bier of Kwon Jong-ung, former writer of the April 15 Literary Production Company, to express condolences over his death.

   24 Kim Yong-nam sends a message of greetings to Viktor Yanukovich, president of Ukraine, on the occasion of its national day.

   24 The KCNA reports that Kim Jong-il gave a field guidance to the 927 Chicken Farm.

   25 The Rodong Sinmun blasts the joint South Korea-U.S. military exercise Ulchi Freedom Guardian, branding it as "all-out war exercises" targeting North Korea.

   25 Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter arrives in Pyongyang on a mission to win the release of Aijalon Gomes, a 30-year-old American detained in the North for illegally entering the country in January. Carter met Kim Yong-nam "in a warm atmosphere," according to the KCNA.

   25 The KCNA reports that Kim Jong-il received a message of sympathy from Chinese President Hu Jintao over severe flood damage in North Korea.

   25 The KCNA reports that Kim Jong-il gave field guidance to the Pyongyang Cornstarch Factory.