Over 90 pct of S. Koreans say N. Korea’s denuclearization impossible

SEOUL, Nine out of 10 South Koreans are skeptical about the possibility of North Korea abandoning its nuclear program, a survey showed Monday, as the reclusive country continues to advance its nuclear weapons and missile programs. According to the Gallup Korea poll of 1,043 adults, commissioned by the Chey Institute for Advanced Studies, 91 percent replied that the North's denuclearization was "impossible." Of them, 41.4 percent considered denuclearization to be "not possible at all," while 49.7 percent said it was not possible. In last year's poll, 77.6 percent of the respondents said they believed North's denuclearization was impossible. In the latest survey, 60.8 percent said it was unlikely for the United States to demonstrate nuclear deterrence on the Korean Peninsula in the event of a contingency at the risk of its own mainland being attacked by missiles, such as intercontinental ballistic missiles or submarine-launched ballistic missiles. Some 39.3 percent of the respondents said it was likely fo r Washington to exercise extended deterrence to defend Seoul despite the risk. The survey was conducted from Dec. 15 last year to Jan. 10 through one-on-one in-person interviews. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points. Source: Yonhap News Agency