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KOR

Press Releases

Foreign Minister Meets Bilaterally with his UK Counterpart on the Sidelines of the 71st UNGA Session

Date
2016-09-21
hit
6954

1. During his visit to New York to attend the 71st session of the UN General Assembly, Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se met bilaterally with Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson of the UK on September 20, New York time. In their meeting, the two top diplomats discussed in depth possible responses to North Korea’s fifth nuclear test; ways for the Republic of Korea and the United Kingdom to work more closely together in the wake of the Brexit decision; and ways to step up bilateral substantive cooperation.

° The Minister and the Secretary reaffirmed the commitment to continuously seek advances in the bilateral “comprehensive and creative partnership” even in the wake of the UK decision to withdraw from the EU. They agreed to work closely together to build mutually beneficial economic ties.

2. With regard to the North Korean nuclear issue, Minister Yun stressed to Minister Steinmeier that North Korea’s fifth nuclear test, different from the previous rounds in terms of the strength and interval, is a grave provocation conducted in flagrant violation of UN Security Council Resolution 2270. The Minister, extending appreciation to the UK for its leading role on the bilateral and unilateral levels in international responses to North Korea’s nuclear test, asked the country to continue doing so.

° Secretary Johnson, sharing Minister Yun’s view of North Korea’s nuclear test as a serious, unacceptable provocation, brought attention to the fact that the UK had issued a statement of condemnation and had summoned the North Korean Ambassador to the UK to lodge strong protest on the heels of North Korea’s fifth nuclear test.

° The Secretary went on to say that the UK, as a permanent member of the Security Council, will play an active role in the lead-up to the adoption of a resolution over the nuclear test.

3. With respect to the ROK-UK substantive cooperation, the Minister and the Secretary took note of the fact that despite the Brexit decision, the UK government, by taking active measures, is managing the situation in a stable manner. They also noted with appreciation that despite the global economic slowdown, the ROK and the UK had seen their bilateral trade volume reach a record-breaking 13.5 billion US dollars in 2015.

° The two ministers agreed to seek ways to step up mutually beneficial cooperation on economy, trade, nuclear power plants, creative economy and consular affairs through high-level consultative channels in the fields of foreign affairs, economy, finance and creative industry.

4. The ROK-UK foreign ministerial meeting, the first of its kind since Secretary Johnson took up the current post, seen to have contributed to efforts to step up bilateral coordination on the North Korean nuclear issue as well as substantive cooperation.


* unofficial translation