Foreign Minister and the CFR President Express Hope for Peace and Stability on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia

Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se met with President Richard Haass of the US Council on Foreign Affairs (CFR) on June 20 and exchanged with him in-depth views on the current situations on the Korean Peninsula and in Northeast Asia and the Middle East.

Minister Yun elaborated on the latest developments on the Korean Peninsula, including a series of overtures for bilateral talks from North Korea to the Republic of Korea and the US. He stressed that with regard to the North Korean nuclear issue, the ROK government is working to break the cycle of provocation followed by dialogue and concessions and to make meaningful progress. He went on to mention that during the visit of President Park Geun-hye to China next week, the ROK government will exchange views with the Chinese government in this regard.

In response, President Haass voiced his hope that the upcoming presidential visit to China would serve as an important opportunity to win continued support from China on North Korea issues, highlighting the important role of China in resolving such issues.

In answer to President Haass’ question regarding the key features of the Northeast Asia peace and cooperation initiative, Minister Yun explained that it is a trust-building process that starts with dialogue on shared “softer” issues and gradually builds cooperation and trust. He underscored that this initiative is highly needed in Northeast Asia, which is embroiled in various regional conflicts and faces a lack of multilateral cooperation mechanisms. President Haass expressed consent on the Minister’s views.

President Haass noted that the US, through its policy of rebalancing toward the Asia-Pacific, is expanding its role in the region’s sectors of military, diplomacy and economy. He offered his outlook that such rebalancing policy would remain in place under the Obama administration.

Minister Yun and CFR President Haass exchanged in-depth views on the situation in the Middle East, including the recent developments in Syria.

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