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Establishing Permanent Peace on the Korean Peninsula
The ROK government seeks to establish permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula along with the denuclearization of North Korea, as a comprehensive solution. In this vein, President Moon Jae-In presented the “Berlin Initiative” on July 7th, 2017, outlining his new North Korea policy towards that end.
The following are five key principles of President Moon’s vision of lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula. First, the ROK government pursues only peace, a peace for the Korean Peninsula free from the threat of nuclear weapons and war. Second, the ROK government will seek the denuclearization of North Korea that guarantees the security of its regime. Third, the ROK government will work towards establishing a permanent peace regime on the Korean Peninsula. Fourth, based on that peace, the ROK government will seek prosperity for the whole of the Korean Peninsula. And fifth, the ROK government will consistently pursue nonpolitical exchange and cooperation projects regardless of the political and military situations.
Corresponding the ROK government's sincere endeavor towards the peace, the historic 2018 Inter-Korean summit meeting was held on April 27th, 2018. At the summit, the two leaders expressed their strong will towards building a peace regime in the 「Panmunjeom Declaration for Peace, Prosperity, and Unification of the Korean Peninsula」as follows: The two sides agreed to declare the end of war this year the marks the 65th anniversary of the Armistice Agreement and actively promote the holding of trilateral meetings involving the two Koreas and the United States, or quadrilateral meetings involving the two Koreas, the United States and China with a view to replacing the Armistice Agreement with a peace treaty and establishing a permanent and solid peace regime.
Peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula is a cornerstone for the peace and prosperity of the Northeast Asian region and the international community as a whole. In this regard, the ROK government will continue to strive toward realizing its vision of lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula by taking a more leading role while closely collaborating with the international community.
North Korean Human Rights
The universal value and international norms of respecting the human life must be observed in every corner of the Korean Peninsula. The ROK government will continue to join the international community in raising its voice against the appalling human rights conditions in North Korea and also in working together to achieve real progress by urging North Korean authorities to introduce changes in their human rights policies and institutions.
The ROK government has actively participated in the discussions on North Korean human rights issues held within the framework of the UN. For instance, the ROK government co-sponsored the resolutions on the human rights situation in North Korea at the meetings of the UN General Assembly and the UN Human Rights Council and supported the activities of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in North Korea. At the bilateral level, the ROK government has had consultations with countries like the United States and the European Union on measures to improve the North Korean human rights situation. The COI report released in February 2014 has greatly raised awareness within the international community on the human rights situation in North Korea. Following the recommendations of the COI report and the relevant UN Human Rights Council resolution, the OHCHR opened a field office in Seoul in June 2015 to monitor the human rights situation in North Korea. The Korean government is cooperating closely with this office.
Furthermore, ROK’s North Korean Human Rights Act, which came into effect in September 2016, will help to expand the institutional foundation for raising awareness and ensuring accountability. In particular, the Ambassador-at-large on North Korean Human Rights, appointed in accordance with this new Act, is engaging the international community to raise further awareness around the world.