Created: 9/28/1996

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I Olndor ofCentral Intelligence

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NORTH KOREA: Public Relations Offensive Over IrtcujwnH

Pyongyang's international wireservice yesterday carried an "authorized" statement accusing the South of killing "unarmed" North Korean soldiers "in cold blood" after their submarine ran agroundroutine traininglw North repeated its demand that Seoul immediately return the submarine, survivors, and bodies of those killed.

North Korean leaders accused Seoul of rejecting efforts to settle the "accident" peacefully and warned that "we have Ihe right loundredfoldhousandfold."

Press reports say South Korean officials today shot dead one of the five remaining North Korean infiltrators]

North Korean Army representatives at P'anmunjom conveyed essentially the same messageeeting on Thursday with representatives of the UN command. The North Koreans called on "the US side" to repatriate the submarine and crew, warning that the North would take unspecified "decisive measures" if the demand was rejected.

P'yongyang probably is combining aggressive disinformation with blunt threats in an effort to dissuade Seoul and Washington from seeking UN Security Council condemnation of the armed incursion. The campaign probably also reflects concern that international relief donations and other economic aid will dry up if Seoul's account of the incident goes unchallenged.

In addition, the Army's threat to take "decisive measures"Is intended in part to divide Washington and Seoul over appropriate responses to the incident.

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