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KOR

Press Releases

Foreign Minister Yun to Become the First ROK Foreign Minister to Visit Cuba

Date
2016-06-04
hit
6344

1. Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se, after accompanying President Park Geun-hye on major diplomatic events during her state visit to France, for the first time for a Foreign Minister of the Republic of Korea, will visit Cuba on June 4, local time, and attend a Summit of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS) in his capacity as head delegate from the ROK.

2. The ACS Summit will mark the first summit-level multilateral meeting to take place in Cuba since the US and Cuba agreed to normalize their relations. The ACS has invited Foreign Minister Yun to the event, which will be held in Cuba, a country that the ROK has no diplomatic relations with. In consideration of this, the ROK and the Summit host have agreed that Minister Yun will start attending the Summit with the afternoon – summit -- session on June 4 immediately after his visit to France, and that the sessions before that will be attended by Second Vice Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yul in his capacity as acting Foreign Minister.

◦ Given the nature of multilateral meetings, Minister Yun is expected to have opportunities to naturally meet leaders and foreign ministers of countries that will attend the ACS Summit.

3. Minister Yun will attend the ACS Summit as part of the ROK government’s continued diplomatic efforts to build network with Latin America, which includes President Park Geun-hye’s four-country tour in the region in 2015 and her visit to Mexico in April 2016. The ROK government has been seeking stronger connectivity with the region through strategic dialogue with the region’s key consultative mechanisms, including the Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC), the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), the Central American Integration System (SICA) and the Pacific Alliance. Accordingly, the ACS Summit will serve as a good opportunity to build connectivity with the Caribbean region, which, despite its status as a significant pillar in Latin America, the ROK has held few high-level consultations with.

◦ The ACS Summit mainly covers climate change and sustainable development goals (SDGs), the most significant global agenda items that the international community, including the UN, has reached agreements on in 2015. The ROK, the host of the Green Climate Fund (GCF), which plays an important role with regard to climate change, and the chair country of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), which plays a pivotal role in the implementation of measures for sustainable development, has a great potential for cooperation with the ACS on the global stage.

4. On the sidelines of the ACS meeting, Minister Yun, in his capacity as Foreign Minister of the 36-member FEALAC’s Regional Coordinator of East Asia, will meet bilaterally with his counterparts from Costa Rica and Guatemala, FEALAC’s former and current Regional Coordinators for Latin America, respectively, and discuss with them preparations for the eighth FEALAC Foreign Minister’s Meeting, which the ROK will host in the first half of the year 2017. Minister Yun will also meet with the ACS Secretary-General to discuss ways for the ROK to contribute to the ACS’ projects designed to address climate change in the Caribbean and those related to sustainable development.


* unofficial translation