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N. Korea, S. Korea to Play Soccer

May 16, 2002

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SEOUL, South Korea (AP) _ North Korean leader Kim Jong Il has promised to send his national soccer team to South Korea for a friendly match in September.

Independent lawmaker Park Geun-hye, the daughter of former South Korean dictator Park Chung-hee, said Thursday she proposed the friendly match during her visit to Pyongyang last week, and Kim agreed.

Kim did not mention the World Cup, which will be played in South Korea and Japan starting May 31.

The communist nation has ignored an offer by FIFA, soccer’s world governing body, to stage one or two of the 32 World Cup matches allotted to South Korea.

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