New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark, ex-Vietnam War Protestor, says meeting Henry Kissinger in Seoul is "a privilege"

Jurriaan Bendien bendien at
Sun Jul 27 08:36:07 MDT 2003

NZ's nuclear stance a barrier to US military alliance, says Kissinger

11.45pm - By IAN STUART
SEOUL - The man called a "legend in his lifetime" by Prime Minister Helen
Clark, believes New Zealand's anti-nuclear legislation is a barrier to
military co operation, but not to the relationship between the two
countries. New Zealand banned nuclear-powered or fueled American warships,
during the David Lange-led Labour Government in the mid 1980s.

However, after a meeting with Miss Clark in Seoul today, Dr Henry Kissinger,
a former secretary of state to two former American presidents and the United
States national security adviser from 1969 to 1975, said New Zealand's anti-
nuclear legislation (introduced in 1987) was still an obstacle to nuclear
cooperation. "It will make the traditional allied co-operation more
difficult but it has not been an obstacle to close cooperation in all the
other fields I am familiar with," said Dr Kissinger, who asked to see Miss
Clark to familiarise himself with issues affecting the two countries.

However, Dr Kissinger, 80, emphasised he was making his comments as a
private citizen, and not as a formal envoy of the American Government. He
was in Seoul as the official United States representative for the 50th
commemorations of the armistice on July 27, 1953 which ended the Korean war.

America sent 1.79 million soldiers to Korea and had 37,000 casualties. New
Zealand sent more than 6000 soldiers and sailors and had 45 casualties.

Dr Kissinger and Miss Clark discussed the deepening nuclear crisis over
North Korea's moves to establish a nuclear weapons capability. Yesterday
after meeting with South Korean president Roh Mu Hyun, Miss Clark said the
world would not stand for North Korea's nuclear brinkmanship. Today Dr
Kissinger said he believed the issue could be resolved and said there may
soon be another top level meeting between North Korea and the United States.

He said the role of China in resolving the nuclear issue with North Korea
was very important "but we shouldn't present it as if China was being
involved in this to do a favour to other countries". "The challenge is to
find a method and approach in which China's interests are as involved as
ours." He said he did not believe he would have a role in resolving the
issue -- "certainly not in the negotiations at this stage".

Miss Clark and Dr Kissinger met for 45 minutes in a Seoul hotel. "It's been
a privilege for met to meet with Dr Kissinger who I think is a legend in his
own lifetime, a man who was a very successful secretary of state who
produced the peace agreement for Vietnam when I was a very young person
interested in politics. "We have had a fascinating discussion today about
some of the world's current predicaments," Miss Clark said.

Dr Kissinger shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 1973 with North Vietnamese
diplomat Le Duc Tho for his role in establishing the Vietnam war ceasefire.


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