South Korean leaders warn of threats to “universal values”

South Korea’s President Yun Seok-yul warned the NATO summit on new conflicts and threats to universal values ​​in competition, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and China’s involvement with Russia, South Korea. Officials said yesterday.

Yun joined the NATO summit as an observer at a conference in Spain as Russian troops intensified the attack on Ukraine and became the first South Korean leader to attend the NATO summit.

“There are moves to deny the universal values ​​we have protected as a new structure of competition and conflict is being formed,” Yun said in a speech Wednesday, according to South Korean officials. ..

Photo: EPA-EFE

Yun did not identify Russia or China, but said the international community faces complex security threats that cannot be resolved by a single country.

“He mentioned the Ukrainian war, and as most other participating countries did, he expressed concern about Russia’s responsibility for the war and China’s responsibility in the international community,” it was not specified. Officials said.

South Korea is a strong US ally and accepts approximately 28,000 US troops. It has also built an important economic relationship with South Korea’s largest trading partner, China.

Yun, like his predecessor, needs to balance these two relationships in the face of a militant North Korea developing nuclear weapons and missiles.

Yun hopes to build relations with NATO members in the face of unpredictable international affairs and promote international cooperation on North Korea’s nuclear ambitions, South Korean officials said before the summit. Said to.

South Korea’s approach to NATO was born out of the alliance facing east towards a new focus, called the Indo-Pacific, which Yun welcomed.

In a new strategic concept announced Wednesday, NATO has made China a challenge to NATO’s “profit, security and values” and “remains uncertain about its strategy, intent and military buildup.” It was the first to explain it as an economic and military powerhouse. ..

US President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Fumio Kishida also attended the NATO summit as observers and agreed that the progress of North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs would pose a serious threat not only to the Korean Peninsula but also to East Asia. And the world.

China’s state media warned South Korea and Japan attending the NATO summit and criticized the alliance’s expanding partnership in Asia.

North Korea said this week that NATO’s involvement in the Asia-Pacific region would import angry conflicts in Europe.

Australia and New Zealand also attended the summit, with four observers from the region attending.

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