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Pres. Lee, Obama Agree on `Extended Deterrence`

Posted June. 17, 2009 05:56,   


President Lee Myung-bak and U.S. President Barack Obama agreed yesterday to sternly deal with North Korea’s provocations based on a comprehensive and strategic bilateral alliance.

The North has stepped up its belligerent activities by conducting its second nuclear test, preparing to launch an intercontinental ballistic missile, and threatening to weaponize all of its plutonium and begin a uranium enrichment program.

In the Oval Office, the two leaders adopted a statement for a “joint vision for the (South) Korea-U.S. alliance.”

The statement, which follows up on the agreement on the 21st-century alliance reached by President Lee and Obama’s predecessor George W. Bush at Camp David in April last year, takes the bilateral alliance one step further. It includes a written guarantee on “extended deterrence” that puts Korea under the U.S. nuclear umbrella and provides conventional weapons.

The extended deterrence is a comprehensive defensive alliance to stave off enemy attacks by mobilizing all means necessary to protect an ally as a country would protect itself.

The two leaders also included in the statement their commitment to further strengthen bilateral cooperation to resolve North Korean issues.

Saying the participants to the six-party nuclear disarmament talks excluding North Korea need to send a united voice, President Lee suggested a five-party framework, to which President Obama agreed.

They also concurred that a principled and strategic approach is needed to send the North a clear message that it will not be rewarded but face consequences for its wrong behavior.

Recognizing the strategic, economic and political significance of the free trade deal reached between the two countries in 2007, both leaders pledged to closely cooperate to move it forward.

They also reaffirmed their commitment to cooperate in global problems such as climate change and energy issues.