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‘On the Record’ Goes Inside North Korea

ICC Note:

Fox News followed Franklin Graham into North Korea to provide a rare glimpse at the nation from the inside.

10/21/09 North Korea (FoxNews) This is a rush transcript from “On the Record,” October 19-20, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: You are going deep into the heart of communist North Korea. For the second time in 14 months, “On the Record” went inside the secretive country with Reverend Franklin Graham and his humanitarian group Samaritan’s Purse. Now, this week, you will go to a hospital that we visited on our last trip that sometimes — only sometimes — had power. Now, what’s it like now? Better or worse? You’re going to see for yourself.

Now, keep in mind at all times during our visit, we were with North Korean minders. Your rare trip begins right now.

We’re at a guest house here DPRK. And I use the term “DPRK” B. I’ve learned from the people who are gracious hosts to us here that they prefer we not call their country North Korea, but DPRK, which is their official name.

We have had a very interesting afternoon. We only arrived a few hours ago, but already Reverend Franklin Graham has met with the vice foreign minister, the very man who is at the six-party talks on behalf of the DPRK when they talk with the United States and the other countries concerning the very important issue of nuclear weapons.

Incidentally, this is a very important day in DPRK because earlier today missiles were fired off, test-missiles. The whole world has been watching that.

KIM KYE-GWAN, DPRK VICE FOREIGN MINISTER (Via translator): We had a very good talk with Reverend Franklin Graham today and you will have an opportunity to be briefed by him personally.

Maybe after him you can understand how we take things very importantly and our relationship very importantly.

REV. FRANKLIN GRAHAM, SAMARITANS PURSE: Yes, the deputy foreign minister, Kim. This is the man who represents the DPRK at the six-party talks. He’s got a very pragmatic personality, a very sharp man.

And, Greta, we talked about the issues that separate our country. There are a lot of issues. And I’m certainly not here as a diplomat. I’m not here in an official capacity to speak for the United States. I’m here as a private citizen wanting to help this country, but at the same time to try to encourage our two countries to speak face to face.

I was in Washington just a few weeks ago. I met with the new special envoy here, Mr. Bosworth, Ambassador Bosworth, and spoke to different people on the Hill to try to encourage our country to pay attention to the DPRK.

This is a dangerous situation, a country that is developing nuclear weapons, that has already tested them, and we just cannot ignore this part of the world. We have to talk to these people.

And we need to build bridges of friendship — well, not necessarily friendship, but trust and understanding, which I believe will lead eventually to friendship.

We were — back during World War II, we were allies, our country and the United States, and fighting a common enemy. And for the last 60 years we have been fighting each other. And it’s got to change.

GRAHAM: Our country, unfortunately, the DPRK gets pushed off the radar from time to time. And our country is busy with the war in Afghanistan, we have our economic problems, and it seems like this is a long way away from anybody, and who cares?

But we better care, because if war ever erupted on this peninsula, it would drag United States, China, Russia, a number of nations into a conflict nobody wants. And if we ignore it the problem is not going to go away. If we pay attention to it I think we can solve it, we can resolve these issues.

Sixty years — this is nuts. Our armies have been facing each other for 60 years.

I’m a minister. I spoke to Deputy Foreign Minister Kim about things of faith, about giving more freedom to the people of faith of this nation. And he listened.

We have asked for permission to build a church for the diplomatic community here. Diplomats come from all over the world to be ambassadors here. There’s no place to worship. And many of these diplomats are people of faith, and we would like to have a place where they could worship.

We’re going to continue to help them with dental centers, we’re going to continue to help them with a number of projects where we can — but I want to try to build bridges of understanding between the United States and the people of the DPRK.

October 20, 2009 – Inside North Korea, Part 2

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: And now your trip inside North Korea continues.

Fourteen months ago Reverend Franklin Graham took all of us to a North Korean hospital, and we were horrified by what we saw, doctors or operating in darkness, having to rely on sunlight seeping through windows to see.

And Rev. Graham is not a guy who can sit by when people are suffering. So after seeing the horrible conditions, he directed his humanitarian group, Samaritan’s purse, see what he could do.

Right now you are going back to that same hospital. Now, it is important to note, during our entire trip, we had Korean minders with us at all times.

REV. FRANKLIN GRAHAM, SAMARITAN’S PURSE: Greta, this is not only tremendous, but for the United States government to make this kind of investment, this is helping the people. And by putting electricity and this hospital, we were able to do free tool for USAID, it is saving lives. They have electricity. We’re middle the surgery here for perforated ulcer that this person has.

But this is U.S. aid money that we spend to put a generator into this hospital. So I just want to thank the American people for making this investment.

VAN SUSTEREN: As an aside, the generator was made where?

GRAHAM: It is a caterpillar.

VAN SUSTEREN: In the United States.

GRAHAM: In the United States.

And Greta, we were told that we could buy a generator from China or from some other country, and I said absolutely not. If we are going to invest American, U.S. aid money in this country, I wanted to use American technology. And so we chose Caterpillar, which we believe is one of the best.

VAN SUSTEREN: And look at the electricity in the light over the surgery over this man’s abdomen. In some instances, were they at some point in time using mirrors to transfer light?

GRAHAM: Last time, yes, it was very dark. And they were having to work very close to the window to really get as much light as they can.

VAN SUSTEREN: Tomorrow night in part three of your trip, you are going on the Pueblo. Our U.S. naval ship was seized by North Korea in 1968. The North Koreas kept our sailors for almost a year before letting them go, but they decided to keep the Pueblo.

Reverend Graham suggested to the North Koreans that it is time to return the Pueblo. What did the North Koreans say? Your trip continues tomorrow night. Don’t miss that.

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