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Ministry News

Minister of Foreign Affairs Cho Tae-yul Attends Group of 20 (G20) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting

Date
2024-02-26
hit
9270

Minister of Foreign Affairs Cho Tae-yul Attends Group of 20 (G20) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting



Minister of Foreign Affairs Cho Tae-yul attended the Group of 20 (G20) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from February 21 to 22.



The foreign ministers of 21 member countries and invited countries, as well as representatives from international organizations, who attended this Meeting discussed the G20’s role in resolving geopolitical conflicts that are threatening world peace and stability, including the war in Ukraine, as well as ways for the G20 to work together to restore and strengthen multilateralism in response to various global challenges.



Foreign Minister Cho expressed Korea’s commitment to continuing to play a constructive role to advance cooperation at the G20 on important issues faced by the international community. Specifically, he proposed the following as areas for cooperation: △Maintaining peace in regions, including Ukraine, the Middle East, and the Korean Peninsula, △Addressing global issues, such as climate change, the digital sector, and sustainable development, and △Strengthening key multilateral organizations, including the Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs), the World Trade Organization (WTO), and the United Nations (UN).



First, Foreign Minister Cho called for ending the war in Ukraine as early as possible, ensuring adherence to international law and humanitarian access in the Gaza Strip, and the cessation of all provocations in the Red Sea. In particular, he stated that the Korean government is making efforts for the restoration of peace and reconstruction in Ukraine based on  the “Ukraine Peace and Solidarity Initiative” that the government announced last year, and expressed the government’s will to continue contributing to the reconstruction and recovery of Ukraine through the “Ukraine Donor Coordination Platform” that the government recently joined.



Foreign Minister Cho emphasized that above all, the G20 should play a leading role in ensuring a firm and united international response to North Korea's illegal actions that threaten peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula and in the world, including its nuclear and missile development and series of provocations, North Korea-Russia military cooperation, and violations of the UN Security Council resolutions. Furthermore, he stated that security issues, such as North Korea’s nuclear program, and North Korean human rights issues are interconnected like two sides of the same coin, and pointed out that North Korea is developing nuclear and missile capabilities at the expense of the human rights of its citizens. He called for intensified international efforts to improve the human rights situation in North Korea.



Secondly, Foreign Minister Cho also stressed the need for enhanced cooperation within the G20 to address three urgent global issues -- climate change, digital transformation, and sustainable development -- while overcoming confrontations over geopolitical issues.



In this regard, he introduced that the Korean government is striving for global decarbonization through the Carbon-Free Energy (CFE) Initiative, and the government will serve as a facilitator of international AI governance discussions by holding a series of AI conferences this year, including the AI Safety Summit. He also explained that at the same time, the Korean government is promoting global inclusive growth and increasing its support for the Global South, including by increasing its ODA budget by 40% this year and hosting the first-ever Korea-Africa Summit.



Thirdly, Foreign Minister Cho said that in order to address complex crises such as climate change, pandemics, inequality, and conflicts, we have no other option than multilateralism, and stressed that the three key multilateral organizations -- the Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs), the World Trade Organization (WTO), and the United Nations (UN) -- need to pursue reforms to ensure their relevance and effectiveness in responding to the global issues, and highlighted the importance of the G20’s leadership to that end.



Particularly, Foreign Minister Cho expressed the will of Korea as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council to contribute constructively to strengthening the UN’s role in achieving global peace and prosperity, and emphasized the importance of enhancing security-development nexus, as well as strengthening partnerships with various stakeholders, including regional organizations, international financial institutions, the private sector, and civil society.



Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Cho attended the "Rising to the Challenge on Haiti" meeting jointly hosted by the United States, Brazil, and the UN on the afternoon of February 22. In the meeting, he expressed concerns about the seriousness of violence and security absence in Haiti, and said that Korea will join the international community's efforts to restore security in Haiti.



On various occasions on the sidelines of this Meeting, including the Korea-U.S.-Japan Foreign Ministers' Meeting, the MIKTA Foreign Ministers' Meeting, and nine bilateral meetings*, as well as sessions and formal dinner of the Meeting, Foreign Minister Cho actively engaged with foreign ministers from major countries and representatives from international organizations and strengthened friendship with them. He also laid the groundwork for cooperation by exchanging views on bilateral relations and global issues.



* Foreign ministers of Canada, Indonesia, Japan, Portugal, France, Germany, and Argentina, deputy foreign minister of Italy, and Director-General of UNESCO



The G20 Foreign Ministers' Meeting served as an opportunity for participating countries to reaffirm the importance of multilateralism in addressing various global challenges and agree on the need for the G20 to play a leading role, and have constructive discussions on ways to work together in the lead-up to the G20 Summit in Rio de Janeiro.



The Korean government plans to enhance its status as a “Global Pivotal State” that contributes to freedom, peace, and prosperity by participating actively in the G20’s efforts to address key international issues.