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Condoleezza Rice to Visit Korea

Posted July. 02, 2004 22:10,   


U.S. National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice is to visit Korea on July 9 as a special envoy of U.S. President George W. Bush.

Cheong Wa Dae spokesperson Kim Jong-in announced on July 2 that “Advisor Rice will visit Korea for one day” and that “she will pay a courtesy call on President Roh to discuss pending issues such as North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and the reduction of U.S. forces in Korea.”

Many speculate that Iraqi issues will also be one of the main concerns for Rice’s visit.

Facing the presidential election in November, the Bush government is getting criticized for tangled issues related to the Iraqi war, and is now seeing the importance of the Korean government’s cooperation in sending additional Korean troops to Iraq.

One Cheong Wa Dae official guessed,”She will probably forward a message from Bush requesting the Korean government to continue support for Iraqi issues, despite the murder of the Korean hostage Kim Sun-iIl, a Gana Trading employee in Iraq.”

In the same light, there will be a through discussion about cooperating for the war against terror.

Also, Some exchange of opinions on the U.S and North Korea’s solutions suggested during the 3rd round of six-way talks about North Korean nuclear weapons last month in Beijing, China.

Rice will also meet with Foreign Affairs-Trade Minister Ban Ki-moon and her counterpart, Korean National Security Advisor Kwon Jin-ho.

This is Rice’s first visit since the current Korean government came to office. She is reported to also be planning to visit other Asian countries including China and Japan.

Jung-Hun Kim jnghn@donga.com