Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha met with Chargé d’Affaires Marc Knapper and Commander of United States Forces Korea General Vincent Brooks at the US Embassy in Seoul on June 21, 2017 and asked for cooperation in ensuring a successful visit to the United States by President Moon Jae-in on June 29-July 2, 2017.
Minister Kang conveyed deep condolences and sympathies from the Korean people, including President Moon, on the death of Otto Warmbier, who had been detained in North Korea. Minister Kang said that what North Korea had done in disregard of the universal human value of human rights was very harsh and should be criticized, and that the ROK government is 100 percent with the US on this matter.
In response, Chargé d’Affaires (CDA) Knapper and General Brooks expressed appreciation for warm words of sympathy and condolence from the ROK side, including President Moon’s telegram of condolence, and said that they will convey the Korean people’s message to their home country.
CDA Knapper and Commander Brooks expressed hope that with the inauguration of Minister Kang, who has ample experience in the multilateral arena and expertise, the ROK-US alliance that shares values will develop into a global alliance which deals with not only regional peace and stability, but global issues together. They said that to that end, they will closely work together with Minister Kang.
Minister Kang stressed that the ROK-US alliance is a linchpin of peace and security in the Asia-Pacific, and the foundation for prosperity of the ROK and the US. She also said that the ROK will continue to cooperate with the US Embassy in the ROK and US Forces Korea in order to further strengthen the alliance based on the strong bilateral relations and the steadfast ROK-US combined defense posture.
The two sides agreed that the Presidents of the ROK and the US share the goal of the complete denuclearization of North Korea, and they totally agree that the goal will be pursued through sanctions, pressure, and dialogue.
Minister Kang especially stressed that the upcoming first ROK-US summit under the new governments in both countries will become an opportunity to solidify the foundation for cooperation between the two countries over the next five years. To ensure a successful summit, she asked for special attention and active cooperation from the US Embassy in the ROK and US Forces Korea, which are directly dealing with the bilateral relations on the ground.
CDA Knapper and Gen. Brooks emphasized that the upcoming visit to the US by the ROK President will serve as an opportunity for the leaders of the two countries to build ties and trust, and reaffirm that the strength and steadfastness of the ROK-US alliance will continue under the new governments in both countries. They said that they will make their best efforts to make the event a success.