Wednesday, April 24, 2013

South Korea: Park to propose `Northeast Asia Peace Pact '

President Park Geun-hye speaks during a luncheon with managing editors of newspapers and broadcasters at Cheong Wa Dae, Wednesday.
/ Cheong Wa Dae press corps

By Oh Young-jin, Kim Tae-gyu

President Park Geun-hye will propose a regional peace pact that includes South and North Korea, China and Japan during her visit to the United States next month. The U.S. may also be invited to join the pact.
“We need to take steps to ensure peace where we can,” President Park said during a luncheon meeting with a group of newspaper and television news managing editors at Cheong Wa Dae, Tuesday.
“North Korea will be invited,” the President said, calling it, “The Northeast Asia Peace Pact” or, briefly, the “Seoul Process.”
Park said her proposal is aimed at building confidence among countries in the region.
“We may start with joint steps against terrorism, climate change and nuclear power,” she said, indicating that this will be expanded to more sensitive political issues.
Park said that she will take it to her May 7 Washington summit with President Barack Obama but didn’t say whether the U.S. will take an active role in the pact, whether as a signatory or observer.
“We have to challenge the Asia Paradox,” she said, referring to the western observation that Asian countries cooperate economically but quarrel with each other politically. READ MORE

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