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Yoon and Biden could meet again at NATO meeting

Posted May. 23, 2022 08:01,   

Updated May. 23, 2022 08:01


South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol will be visiting Washington, D.C. soon, in response to an invitation extended by U.S. President Joe Biden. Both leaders are likely to meet at the NATO summit to be held next month.

“President Biden appreciated President Yoon’s warm welcome and invited President Yoon to Washington, D.C. at a mutually convenient time,” said the joint statement by the two heads of state. Yoon’s visit to the U.S. will likely be expedited, as the current South Korea-U.S summit was held at the earliest date than any other Korean president since inauguration. President Biden responded to First Lady Kim Kun-hee’s message of “We hope to see you again soon” with “We hope to see you in the U.S.” after the press conference held on Friday.

Ahead of Yoon’s visit to Washington, D.C., both heads of state are likely to meet at the NATO meeting to be held in Madrid Spain on June 29 and 30. “Four Asian-Pacific nations (Korea, Japan, Australia, New Zealand) will be attending the NATO summit which President Biden will be present,” said US State Secretary Tony Blinken. The Korean government is considering President Yoon attending the event. Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio is also expected to attend the event, suggesting that the first South Korea-U.S.-Japan and South Korea-Japan state meeting may be held.

President Yoon is also planning to attend the state meeting by video conference where President Biden will officially announce the launch of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) on Monday.

Ji-Sun Choi aurinko@donga.com