Korean leaders exchange ‘letters of friendship’ — Analysis
Kim Jong-un expressed gratitude to Moon Jae In, the South Korean President for his efforts in resolving tensions.
Kim Jong-un has thanked outgoing South Korean President Moon Jae-in for his “historic” work to improve the relations between the two neighbors. Moon is set to step down in the next month and Yoon Suk-yeol will replace him. He has indicated that he plans to take a harder line against North Korea.
“Kim Jong-un appreciated the pains and effort taken by Moon Jae-in for the great cause of the nation until the last days of his term of office,” Pyongyang’s state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Friday.
North Korean leaders paid respect to “historic joint declarations giving hope for the future to the entire nation”Moon and he signed.
“The exchange of the personal letters between the top leaders of the North and the South is an expression of their deep trust,”KCNA stated.
Moon met with Kim in a number of high-profile encounters. He was the South Korean President who visited Pyongyang for the first time in over a decade and also the first South Korean leader to address the North Korean people. His efforts also included arranging historic meetings between Kim (then-US President Donald Trump) and Pyongyang in 2018/2019.
Moon’s office confirmed the exchange of “letters of friendship” with the North. “The era of confrontation should be overcome with dialogue,”The farewell message was written by the outgoing president.
This letter exchange took place amid rising tensions between the Korean Peninsula and Pyongyang, which has been testing several missiles over recent months. North Korea had announced in March that the Hwasong-17 intercontinental ballistic missile it launched was successful, and capable of reaching America.
The White House condemns the North Korea launch accusing it of violating international laws. “destabilizing the security situation in the region.”Seoul fired its own missile to counter the North’s tests in March.
Unlike Moon’s Democratic Party of Korea, Yoon’s People Power Party (PPP) traditionally holds a more hawkish stance towards North Korea. Last month, Yoon described Pyongyang as his country’s “main enemy.”
During Yoon’s election campaign, his adviser Park Jin said that he was seeking to redeploy US submarines and nuclear bombers to the Korea Peninsila, and to “normalize” the US-South Korean military drills, which were scaled back by Yoon’s predecessor.
Numerous media outlets reported that Joe Biden, the US president, was planning to travel to South Korea in March and meet with Yoon.
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