UPDATE : 2019.4.23 TUE 09:10
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S. Korea will 'tirelessly' seek diplomatic solution to N.K. nuke issue: top diplomat

South Korea will search for ways to bring North Korea back to dialogue to negotiate a peaceful resolution of its nuclear weapons development, Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha said Monday, labeling the issue as the biggest diplomatic challenge facing the South.

"The North Korean nuclear issue still remains the most urgent task facing us," Kang said in the annual meeting of the heads of South Korea's foreign diplomatic missions. She said North Korea has been focusing on completing its nuclear armament, referring to the communist country's biggest nuclear detonation this year and a series of ballistic missile tests.

Minister Kang in a file photo provided by the foreign ministry. (Yonhap)

Minister Kang in a file photo provided by the foreign ministry. (Yonhap)Minister Kang in a file photo provided by the foreign ministry. (Yonhap)

"Against this, our government and the international community, under the principle of not tolerating North Korean nuclear force, have been calling on the country to stop provocations and come back to the negotiating table," according to Kang.

South Korea will continue to work with the international community and under the military alliance with the United States in order to deter North Korea's provocations, the foreign minister said.

"At the same time, South Korea will push to secure room for its own diplomacy and search for a range of measures to bring North Korea back to the table for dialogue, tirelessly mustering efforts for a peaceful resolution of the North Korean nuclear issue," the minister also vowed.

Kang cited cooperation with its key neighbors -- the U.S., China, Japan and Russia -- as well as with nontraditional diplomatic partners as two other diplomatic challenges facing South Korea.

Based on President Moon Jae-in's new diplomacy vision for Eurasian and Southeast Asian countries, South Korea will push to go beyond the Northeast Asian region to build mutual prosperity in the neighboring regions, she said. "Diplomatic diversification efforts will not be limited there," the minister also said, pledging tighter cooperative relations with the European Union and Africa. (Yonhap)

Kim Sua  edt@koeapost.com

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