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Words in the News
Wednesday 12 December 2001
Vocabulary from the news. Listen to and read the report then find explanations of difficult words below.

  North Korean state security
North Korea and the West
Summary: It is one year since Britain and North Korea established ties. But while relations with Europe have warmed, North Korea's relations with the United States have deteriorated and attitudes hardened. This report from Caroline Gluck.
The News Listen  
  It's a time for muted celebration in the North Korean capital, Pyongyang, as the first anniversary of formalising diplomatic ties with Britain is being marked. The British embassy, which opened in Pyongyang in July, is holding a celebratory week with screenings of British films, and book and science exhibitions.

Britain was one of the first European countries to normalise ties with the North last December as the isolationist state began an unprecedented diplomatic drive. It was a time of heightened expectations, soon after the historic summit between the two Korean leaders in which they pledged to end hostility and move towards a new era of reconciliation.

Pyongyang has reacted angrily to recent calls from Washington to allow nuclear inspectors into the country as well as a State Department report which accused North Korea of repressing religious freedom.

The optimistic mood of a year ago has disappeared but, by opening ties with the North, Britain, like many other countries, has opened a door for dialogue and believes that engagement is the best way forward in helping to ease tension, not only on the Korean peninsula but further afield.

Caroline Gluck, BBC NEWS.

The Words Listen
making official

  diplomatic ties
relations between governments

celebrated, remembered

  isolationist state
a country that has cut itself off from other nations

something which hasn't happened


  pledged to
promised to


  opened a door
encouraged, allowed discussion

political discussions aimed at improving relations


Other Words in the News archives


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