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Daily Israel Report

Israel Not Optimistic on North Korea despite Kim Jong’s Death

North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-il’s death still leaves the country “distant and dangerous” for Israel, a Foreign Ministry spokesman says.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 12/19/2011, 8:23 AM

North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-il’s death still leaves the country “distant and dangerous” for Israel, Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor told Arutz Sheva Monday morning.

Israel is assumed to have bombed, four years ago, a Syrian nuclear facility that was designed and being built with North Korean scientists. Israel never has admitted to the bombing.

The reclusive Kim, age 69, died on Saturday of a heart attack, but his death was not announced until Monday. His son Kim Jong-un will take the reins of the nuclear power program, which was tightly ruled by his father since 1994, when he inherited power from his father.

North Korea considers Israel an “imperialist state” and recognizes the Palestinian Authority, but not Israel, as having sovereignty. Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman last year called North Korea part of the “axis of evil” that includes Iran and Syria.

Regarding the chances of a better relationship with the new ruler, Palmor said he was not optmistic. “Nothing from the outside penetrates them,” he stated.

The Asian country has helped arm Syria, Libya and Egypt with missile technology and is closely involved with Iran’s nuclear development. Israel learned of the Syrian nuclear facility built with North Korea’s help and is believed to have bombed it in September 2007, killing 10 North Korean nuclear scientists.