Trump, Moon to Meet 'as Soon as Possible'


20 May, 2017

Moon also sounded unhappy with Trump's strategy of aggressively pursuing cooperation on North Korea with Chinese President Xi Jinping, saying South Korea should "take the lead on matters in the Korean Peninsula" rather than "take the back seat and watch discussions between the US and China".

China's President Xi Jinping set out his opposition to the deployment of an advanced United States missile system, in his first discussion with new South Korean leader Moon Jae-in on Thursday.

North Korea's Korean Central TV Broadcasting Station released what it claims are satellite images of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system deployed in South Korea's Seongju county on May 8, 2017.

Yoon Young-chan told a press conference here on Thursday that President Moon would dispatch separate delegations to discuss THAAD and the DPRK's nuclear program with their Chinese counterparts, although the two issues will be dealt with together.

Despite Chinese anger at North Korea's repeated nuclear and missile tests, China remains the isolated state's most important economic and diplomatic backer, even as Beijing has signed up for tough United Nations sanctions against Pyongyang.

China hoped South Korea "pays attention to China's security concerns" and deals "appropriately" with the THAAD issue, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesman told a briefing in Beijing. The plan under consideration, Kim said, was for Moon to have his first encounter with Trump during the G-20 summit, which will be held in Hamburg, Germany, on July 7-8, and then to visit Washington around the UN General Assembly in September for a summit.

South Korea's new president has vowed to immediately tackle the issues regarding their northern neighbor.

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Although Ms Park's ouster was painful, it also demonstrated the resilience of South Korea's democracy. While it is easy for Americans to sabre-rattle for war with North Korea from the safety of half the world away, it is South Koreans who are the most in danger.

Moon was expected to fill the remaining cabinet and presidential staff appointments swiftly to bring an end to a power vacuum left by the removal of Park Geun-hye in March in a corruption scandal that rocked South Korea's business and political elite.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has extended his congratulations to Moon Jae-in for winning South Korea's presidential election. It said Moon told Abe that it was emotionally hard for South Koreans to accept the agreement.

Katherine Moon is a Korea expert with the Center for East Asia Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. She said a policy of engagement might help North Korea, but hurt efforts by the USA and allies in East Asia. "I would like to work with you to ensure the development of Sino-South Korean ties better benefits the two countries and peoples", the president added.

The hurried deployment of the THAAD batteries last month, literally in the middle of the night, "lacked democratic procedure", Moon complained in an interview last week with the Post's Anna Fifield and Yoonjung Seo.

"The South Korea-U.S. alliance is more important than at any other time given the growing uncertainties over the security situation of the Korean Peninsula", Moon was quoted as saying in their 30-minute phone call.

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