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Moon, Biden agree on importance of S. Korea-U.S. alliance

Moon, Biden agree on importance of S. Korea-U.S. alliance

Posted February. 05, 2021 07:50,   

Updated February. 05, 2021 07:50


South Korean President Moon Jae-in and U.S. President Joe Biden agreed on Thursday to have a summit as soon as the pandemic situation eases, said Kang Min-seok, spokesperson of the South Korean presidential office Cheong Wa Dae. During their conversation over the phone, the two leaders reportedly agreed to devise comprehensive strategies for North Korea, prompting expectations that President Moon might want to have the meeting as early as possible in order to convince President Biden of the need to resume nuclear talks between Washington and Pyongyang.

According to the presidential office, President Biden stressed the importance of having a face-to-face conversation and said he was looking forward to meeting President Moon in person, to which President Moon responded that it would be a special occasion for the people of both countries. Experts say that President Moon might arrange a visit to the United States for April or May although COVID-19 remains a risk.

The South Korean presidential office emphasized that the two leaders had much in common and the atmosphere was great, seemingly in an attempt to dismiss the prediction that there could be friction with the Biden administration, which tries to undo much of former President Trump’s legacy. According to Cheong Wa Dae, Moon and Biden mentioned that they are both catholic and burst into laughter three times during the call. As President Moon thanked President Biden for finding the time to speak with him, President Biden said he was not so busy that he could not call President Moon, which made them laugh.

“I could feel your determination to overcome an unprecedented challenge and make the United States a country of hope,” said President Moon, speaking of President Biden’s inauguration speech. President Biden responded that South Korea is one of Washington’s hopes and he wants to strengthen the alliance in more areas.

Hyung-Jun Hwang constant25@donga.com